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Toyota shuts down plants in Japan after earthquakes, Australian production unaffected
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Toyota shuts down plants in Japan after earthquakes, Australian production unaffected

Toyota will progressively close factories across Japan as it deals with parts shortages caused by earthquakes and aftershocks that have caused widespread death and destruction. Two earthquakes hit the southern island of Kyushu over the past week, a magnitude 6.4 quake last Thursday and a magnitude 7.3 quake on Saturday...


Ford Focus RS RX makes World Rallycross debut with Ken Block - video
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Ford Focus RS RX makes World Rallycross debut with Ken Block - video

The new Ford Focus RS is already one of the quickest and wildest hot hatches in the world - so the Rallycross version, the Ford Focus RS RX, is truly manic. Debuting in Portugal for the FIA World Rallycross Championship last weekend, the Focus RS RX can sprint from 0-60mph (0-97km/h) in less than two seconds - but then, thanks to FIA specifications, so can its rivals...


2012 Alfa Romeo Mito recalled for brake fix
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2012 Alfa Romeo Mito recalled for brake fix

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) has recalled 15 vehicles from the model-year 2012 Alfa Romeo Mito line over concerns that a non-compliant piping connector could cause the brakes to fail. The manufacturer reports that in some vehicles, the brake booster piping connector may not comply with relevant standards...


Ford in no rush to produce long-range EV
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Ford in no rush to produce long-range EV

Unlike some of its competitors, Ford has no near-term plans to introduce an electric vehicle with a driving range of around 320 kilometres (200 miles). Kevin Layden, Ford's director of electrification, told Automotive News last week at the SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) World Congress in Detroit that the company's revised Ford Focus Electric has enough range to satisfy most commuters in the USA...


Kia Picanto will outsell all rivals, says company
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Kia Picanto will outsell all rivals, says company

Kia has boldly predicted that its new Picanto hatch will become Australia’s top-selling micro car, even though no price-leading manual gearbox will be offered. Car-makers often shy away from making internal targets public, but not Kia Australia. It wants to capture 300 sales a month, many of which will come from rivals, but also from the used car market...


2016 Kia Picanto pricing and specifications
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2016 Kia Picanto pricing and specifications

The 2016 Kia Picanto is the ideal offering for parents looking to buy their kids a first car, the company said this week at the micro car's Australian launch. The pint-sized Picanto is a rival for the Holden Spark and top-selling Mitsubishi Mirage at the smallest end of the market...


Fiat 500, Abarth 500 recalled in Australia - UPDATE
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Fiat 500, Abarth 500 recalled in Australia - UPDATE

UPDATE: This article originally made reference to the Fiat Ducato. See bottom of article for details. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Australia (FCA) has recalled a number of vehicles in the 2014 Fiat 500 and 2011-2014 Abarth 500 model lines. The recall affecting 10 examples of 2014-build Fiat 500 involves a potential deviation in the heat treatment process of the seat belt buckles...


2017 Ford Escape debuts FordPass remote smartphone tech
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2017 Ford Escape debuts FordPass remote smartphone tech

Ford’s newly revised Escape SUV, which will be sold here as the updated 2017 Ford Kuga, is the first model to feature the company’s new FordPass system, which allows drivers to remotely unlock, locate and start their vehicle via a smartphone app. The ‘FordPass with Sync Connect’ system hooks up to the Escape’s new SYNC 3 infotainment system, which also adds support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto...


2015-16 Ford Transit recalled in US for airbag fault, Australian models not affected
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2015-16 Ford Transit recalled in US for airbag fault, Australian models not affected

Ford’s home office has recalled over 37,000 examples of its 2015-16 Transit vans for an issue with the side curtain airbags. The affected vans were manufactured between March 12, 2014 and March 18, 2016, all specified with low roofs. The manufacturer reports that due to an error in the assembly process, the side curtain airbag may not deploy with the proper trajectory, as a result of being folded and packaged incorrectly...


US Govt unveils 20kW EV wireless charging system
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US Govt unveils 20kW EV wireless charging system

The US Department of Energy has created a 20-kilowatt wireless charging system for electric vehicles (EVs), in an attempt to address ‘range anxiety’ in potential buyers...


New Peugeot i-Cockpit infotainment system surfaces online
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New Peugeot i-Cockpit infotainment system surfaces online

A set of images that preview what looks to be the next generation of Peugeot’s i-Cockpit infotainment system has surfaced online, offering a look at what will likely be the new 3008 SUV’s interior. The images, made up of two leaked marketing shots and a collection of close-up spy photos that appeared in the Chinese press over the weekend, reveal a new dashtop screen and an expansive display in place of the conventional instrument cluster...


2018 Volkswagen Touareg preview bound for Beijing motor show
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2018 Volkswagen Touareg preview bound for Beijing motor show

Next week’s Beijing motor show will play host to a new concept that will likely, although not officially, hint at the all-new 2018 Volkswagen Touareg. Volkswagen has not offered any details on whether this concept will head to production, but, with the current Touareg due for replacement within the next 12 to 18 months, next week’s show car would seem a clear preview...


China's Zotye rolling out Porsche Macan knockoff
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China's Zotye rolling out Porsche Macan knockoff

The all-new Zotye SR8 has been spied this week, but you'd be forgiven for feeling like you've seen it before. If you thought you were looking at a Porsche Macan, you wouldn't be alone. And, despite the glaring similarities, the Chinese car maker’s SUV will make its market debut at this month’s Beijing motor show...


2016 Ward's 10 Best Interiors list dominated by luxury models
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2016 Ward's 10 Best Interiors list dominated by luxury models

In this year's list of the 10 best interiors, the gongs are dominated by vehicles from luxury marques. For sixth year running, Ward's Auto has evaluated, over a two month period, the interiors of new and substantially updated vehicles released in the US over the past year. All up, the industry magazine shortlisted 47 interiors for this year's awards, with seven of the top 10 spots hailing from luxury marques...


Land Rover Reborn program open to Australian buyers
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Land Rover Reborn program open to Australian buyers

The recently-announced Land Rover Reborn program will be open to Australian buyers - but the stunningly restored early model Land Rover Series and Defender models that will be sold will cost a pretty penny. Last week the brand showed the first of its Land Rover Reborn models in the form of a Series I Land Rover, and there was an intended production number of 25 vehicles announced at that time, too...