IS THE MOST STOLEN CAR
The 20 largest insurance companies say that claims are down since 1980 — but that payouts are higher, Reuters reports. The companies represented by the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI) also says the 1999-2001 Acura Integra has the highest theft rate and claim costs, due in part to hot-rod thieves that steal the vehicles for their engines and transplant them into Honda Civics. The Integra from those years is eight times more likely than normal to be stolen. The HLDI says in 1980, 15.2 of every 1000 vehicles were reported stolen; the number dropped to 2.6 vehicles per 1000 last year, but the average claim has risen nearly fivefold to about $6300.
WRECKS COST U.S. $230 BILLION
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says that car crashes cost the nation $230 billion each year, or $820 per person. Transportation Secretary Norman Y. Mineta said that, based on figures from the year 2000, that alcohol-related crashes are responsible for nearly $51 billion, while the agency attributes $40 billion of the losses to speeding.
NHTSA: Two-Wheel Mayhem? by Eric Peters (4/29/2002)
COLORADO GOES PUBLIC, SORT OF 2004 Chevrolet Colorado
Spy Shots: 2003 Chevy Colorado by Brenda Priddy (4/29/2002)
2004 Chevrolet Colorado
PITS NEW 9-3 AGAINST BMW 2003 Saab 9-3
2003 Saab 9-3Enlarge Photo
SUV OFF THE PLANNER
A Saab spokesman says the brand’s plans for a seven-passenger sport-ute have been scuttled. Kevin Smith told the wire service that the plans to build a Saab version of the upcoming Cadillac SRX proved difficult and more expensive than planned. Smith added that Saab plans to boost sales volume in the U.S. to 70,000 vehicles per year by 2004, by introducing a new range of vehicles, including a new 9-3 entry-level vehicle later this year and a crossover wagon variant in 2003. The new 9-3 will be the first GM product built on the company’s Delta platform, which will also spawn replacements for the Pontiac Grand Am and other compact to mid-size front-drive vehicles.
2002 Saab 9-3 Viggen Conv. by Paul Wiley Cockerham (1/28/2002)