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0:08 Most Mid-Size SUVs Fall Short in Rear Passenger Protection
1:13 Honda Developing Software Defined Vehicle
2:03 GM’s Chief Marketing Officer Steps Down
3:19 Ford Bringing the Bronco to Europe
5:04 Kia Unveils Electric EV9 SUV
5:55 Porsche Offering New Crankcases for Old 911s
7:23 BMW Previews New Head-Up Display for Next-Gen EVs
8:11 BMW To Launch Electric 5 Series for First Time
This is Autoline Daily, the show dedicated to enthusiasts of the global automotive industry.
MOST MID-SIZE SUVs FALL SHORT IN REAR PASSENGER PROTECTION
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety or IIHS recently updated its moderate overlap front crash test to measure protection for rear seat passengers. And of 13 midsize SUVs it just tested, it says most of them don’t offer adequate protection for rear passengers. Only four, the Subaru Ascent, Tesla Model Y and Ford Explorer and Mustang Mach-E, earned good ratings. Three earned marginal ratings and the rest were poor. The IIHS updated the test because it says the gains automakers have made in protecting front seat passengers have not been applied to the rear. For model year 2007 vehicles onward, the risk of fatal injury is 46% higher for belted rear seat passengers than passengers in the front. And the IIHS says that’s in part because restraint technologies have only improved in the front seat.
HONDA DEVELOPING SOFTWARE DEFINED VEHICLE
All the legacy automakers are scrambling to develop an electronic architecture similar to the one that Tesla uses; the so-called software-defined-vehicle, where pretty much every part of the vehicle is controlled by software from a more centralized computing system. Now we can add Honda to that list. It reached an agreement to work with KPIT Technologies, a software integration company that’s based in India. The two companies will develop a new operating system for Honda’s next-gen electronic architecture as well as software for EV powertrains, in-car entertainment and other connected technologies and autonomous driving. But it doesn’t say when it plans to launch the new system.
GM’S CHIEF MARKETING OFFICER STEPS DOWN
Less than a week after General Motors revealed it’s offering buyouts to most of its salaried employees and global executives, the automaker announced its global chief marketing officer, Deborah Wahl, is retiring at the end of the month. Wahl joined GM in 2019 after holding the same position at McDonald’s. She also held marketing positions for a number of automakers. GM, which spent $3.3 billion on advertising in 2021, will conduct an external search for Wahl’s replacement. It’s offering the buyouts as part of an effort to cut $2 billion in costs over the next two years.
FORD BRINGING THE BRONCO TO EUROPE
Not long after saying it would focus more on BEVs and introduce vehicles that are “unapologetically American” in Europe, Ford is doing just that. It showed another teaser for its VW-based MEB vehicle, which says “A Reinvented Ford is Coming,” and reveals the EV will debut on Tuesday the 21st. Ford also announced it’s going to start selling the Bronco in Europe for the first time ever. But only the Outer Banks and Badlands editions, which come standard with more off-road equipment and a 315 horsepower 2.7L turbo V6. Here in the states, these vehicles would sell anywhere from about $50,000 to somewhere in the $80,000 range. So, you know there will be a markup to ship them to Europe. Ford says it’s making these moves to differentiate itself and attract more customers. It will also help it crawl out of the lower priced segment of the European market, which it has slowly slid down into. But there’s also worry this won’t be enough to turn Ford’s European operations around. It’s lost nearly half its market share over the last 10 years and offering Broncos in limited numbers isn’t going to help that. And some analysts think the VW-based EV won’t be different enough for customers to embrace it. The Ultimate fear is that Ford will eventually just be an importer of vehicles to Europe. But what do you think? Let us know in the comments where you think Ford is headed.
KIA UNVEILS ELECTRIC EV9 SUV
Kia pulled the wraps off its newest electric vehicle, the EV9. Fans of the concept’s styling must be happy because it remains pretty faithful to that original look. The EV9 is a large 3-row SUV that rides on the Hyundai Group’s E-GMP platform. It’s not sharing a ton of details at the moment, but it does show the interior has a modern design with a long, thin display that combines the infotainment and instrument cluster together. There also looks to be a generous amount of room with all the seats folded down and a neat feature is second row captain’s chairs that can swivel to make entering and exiting easier or face the 3rd row. Kia says stay tuned for more details.
PORSCHE OFFERING NEW CRANKCASES FOR OLD 911s
Finding replacement parts for old, classic cars can be difficult. That’s why Porsche offers reissued parts for its older models and now it’s making magnesium crankcases available for 911’s built between 1968 and 1976. Until now, the only hope was to weld cracks in the cases or reuse parts from another engine. But now owners can order the crankcases as an original part right from Porsche. However, it wasn’t easy to recreate because the old drawings with production related data were hard to decipher. So Porsche had to go through parts lists, technical info in company archives and interview former and current staff about design details, in order to reproduce the crankcase.
BMW PREVIEWS NEW HEAD-UP DISPLAY FOR NEXT-GEN EVs
Last week, BMW teased its new iDrive system that launches later this year. And now the automaker is giving us a preview of its new head-up display, called BMW Panoramic Vision, that will debut in its Neue Klasse electric vehicles in 2025. It projects information and graphics across the entire width of the windshield for all passengers. While BMW didn’t get into specifics, the new HUD is able to create sharp images by showing info with a higher light intensity and contrast onto a dark coated edge at the lower edge of the windshield. That’s all the details we have for now but BMW says it will share more about the system at the Munich auto show in September.
BMW TO LAUNCH ELECTRIC 5 SERIES FOR FIRST TIME
And BMW also shared a few details about the upcoming 5 Series. An all-electric powertrain will be offered for the first time and it will be available for the sedan, wagon and M versions of the car. The 5 Series will also offer plug-in hybrid variants as well as gasoline and diesel engines with 48V mild hybrid technology. Other new features include an updated design, new operating system with a curved display and digital services. The new 5 Series Sedan launches worldwide in October.
And you won’t want to miss this week’s Autoline After Hours. Sandy Munro and Corey Steuben from Munro Live will be joining the show. Some of the topics they’ll dive into is Tesla’s new assembly process and what they think it will take for Tesla to come out with a $25,000 car and still make a profit. So join John and Gary tomorrow afternoon at 3PM eastern time for what should be a fun show.
But that’s it for today, thanks for watching.
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Seamus and Sean McElroy cover the latest news in the automotive industry for Autoline Daily.