BIG 3 REACT TO TERRORIST ATTACK
Stunned and stirred to action by Tuesday’s terrorist attacks in New York and Washington D.C., General Motors, Ford and DaimlerChrysler each halted U.S. operations and closed their headquarters. The CarConnection.com’s Joseph Szczesny has filed his complete report on the manufacturing and political implications of the attack, and he offers his analysis of how security and other issues raised are being addressed by North America’s Big 3 automakers. Read all about it here.
Day of Terror: Big 3 Shut Down
JAPANESE AUTOMAKERS REACT TO U.S. ATTACKS
From Japan, reaction to the murderous assaults using hijacked U.S. passenger jets to crash into the twin towers of New York’s World Trade Center and the Pentagon in Washington came quickly. Toyota Motor Corporation, which operates three factories in the U.S., closed those facilities, citing employee-security concerns as well as the pragmatic reality of a lack of spare parts caused by the suspension of air traffic across the nation. Honda Motor Company and Mitsubishi Motors America also suspended production at their U.S. factories. From Tokyo, Nissan Motor Company has decided to halt all Japan-U.S. business trips for the time being.
FRANKFURT AUTO SHOW GOES NUMB
The exhibit floor of the Frankfurt Motor Show, usually bustling with noise, excitement and activity during press days, displayed little more than shocked quiet on Wednesday as journalists and auto executives from around the world tried to absorb Tuesday’s terrorist attacks on the United States. Wednesday’s press conference roster was made up primarily of upper-tier suppliers, but there was no real heart in the proceedings. By and large, the executives from those companies that did produce a press conference paid consideration to the victims and their families, opting against the usual auto-show flash in favor of a respectful announcement that they were ready for interviews and that press materials were available. On the main floors of the Frankfurt show, spokespeople and execs occupied the manufacturers’ stands, but the normally blaring auto-show music was turned off out of respect. There was no dancing.
EVEN SO, THE SHOW DID GO ON
Despite the evil felt so deeply by everyone at the Frankfurt Motor Show, new models and concepts were premiered as promised. TheCarConnection.com’s Publisher TCC Team, John Rettie, and the rest of the TCC Team offer their reports on what was worthwhile at the show, including the new Toyota Corolla, the U.S.-bound Maserati and Audi’s conceptual Avantissimo. Read all about it.
MIDSIZE SUVS EARN IMPROVED CRASH RATINGS
After crash testing eight new midsize sport-utility vehicles, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) came away impressed. The IIHS rates vehicles as being "good," "acceptable," "marginal," or "poor." The testing regimen is especially important because it includes offset crash testing wherein the driver-side front end receives the bulk of the impact, a more real-world imitation of the most frequent form of collision. Results of the latest round of IIHS testing show that the 2001 Acura MDX, 2001 Mitsubishi Montero Sport, 2001 Suzuki Grand Vitara XL-7 and 2001 Toyota Highlander all received the highest rating: good. The 2002 Buick Rendezvous and 2002 Isuzu Axiom received "acceptable" ratings, while "marginal" scores went to the 2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer and 2001 Pontiac Aztek. The fact that none of the eight SUVs tested as "poor" marks a significant improvement in SUV safety engineering. The 2002 Ford Explorer was held back from testing while the company makes engineering changes that may affect its crash-test results.
Recall, Rollover and Safety Info by TCC Team (9/10/2001)
CR Likes the Explorer by Joseph Szczesny (8/13/2001)