HEADS TO NY AUTO SHOW New York Auto Show logoThe
New York Auto Show is open to the public, and this week at TheCarConnection.com,
our team of reporters will be bringing you all the new production and concept
vehicles the show has to offer. Get the latest on the Ford Five Hundred,
Infiniti G35 Coupe, Chrysler PT Turbo and more in today’s edition of
2002 New York Auto Show (3/31/2002)
New York Auto Show logo
MONARO WILL BE NEW GTO 2002 Holden MonaroOne of the most memorable musclecar
nameplates will soon be back spinning its tires. The Pontiac GTO will return to
the market in time for 2004 – with a concept version likely debuting at the next
Detroit auto show – revealed General Motors product chief Bob Lutz, but the
next-generation of this classic tire smoker will be coming from “down under.”
Confirming earlier reports in TheCarConnection, Lutz announced that GM would do
a GTO version of the Holden Monaro, a rear-drive coupe being sold in Australia.
The decision to turn to Holden, he added, “gets a high-performance
rear-wheel-drive vehicle back into our system far faster than if we started from
scratch,” designing an all-new GTO in the U.S. Few details are being offered
other than the fact that the next GTO will be V-8-powered.
2002 Holden Monaro
FIVE HUNDRED COMING IN ‘04 2004 Ford Five HundredA tall-roof sedan based on the Ford
CrossTrainer crossover will go on sale in 2004, Ford will announce at the New
York auto show on Thursday. The Five Hundred puts an emphasis on interior room —
larger than the current Taurus, the Five Hundred purports to offer much more leg
and head room, and a high seating position like that of Ford’s SUVs. The
five-seater will be motivated by a new version of the 3.0-liter Duratec V-6 and
either a six-speed automatic or a CVT. Dual front and side airbags, side
curtains, AdvanceTrac stability control and anti-lock brakes will be standard on
all versions. While the Taurus soldiers on in Atlanta, the Five Hundred begins
production in Chicago alongside the CrossTrainer early in 2004.
2004 Ford Five HundredEnlarge Photo
PRICES ON THE RISE
You’re paying 22 percent more for gas than at the end of last year, Reuters reports — and more increases in gas prices could be on the way as summer comes. The average price of gas last week hit $1.34 a gallon for regular unleaded. Prices have run up nearly 23 cents in just the past month. A reviving economy and the war on terrorism could lift prices higher, but experts tell the news service they don’t expect to see them rising as high as the $1.71 a gallon reached last May.
ENDING FIRESTONE REPLACEMENTS
Sunday will be the last day to swap Firestone tires for other brands through Ford, the automaker said Thursday. As part of its sweeping recall of Firestone tires found on some of its most popular SUVs and trucks, Ford said last October that it would finish its replacement program on March 31. The $2.1-billion recall brought about the end of a 100-year relationship between Ford and Firestone, which Ford is said to be interested in rekindling. A Ford spokesman told Reuters the company replaced about 10.6 million tires as a result of its action.