Europe

Fiat, Magna Eyeing Opel
Fiat, Magna Eyeing Opel

Though it's still short of bankruptcy, the parting out of General Motors' corporate structure is underway, and the latest word has Fiat and Magna emerging as rivals over a majority stake in Opel. The gang over at Motor Authority have dug up word from several German officials that shows a clear...Read More»

car on fire
Berlin Set Ablaze By BMW (Literally)

Tempers aren't the only things flaring in Berlin these days: luxury vehicles are also going up in smoke by the dozens. The cause? Arson, presumably instigated by the disenfranchised and the young, who aren't faring so well in today's economic climate. Although things are pretty rough here in the...Read More»

2006 Rolls Royce Phantom
Rolls Royce Defies Down Market

Despite a 2008 that wreaked havoc on car sales, Rolls Royce enjoyed - get ready for this - a 20 percent increase in sales for the '08 model year. It would seem that those who can shell out sick six-figure sums for the gargantuan, opulent, and non-eco-friendly Phantoms and Drophead Coupes aren't...Read More»

2010 Jaguar XFR Spy Shots
Jag XFR Soars Across Bonneville at 225 mph.

A lightly modified version of Jag's latest hi-po luxosedan, the XFR (checkout Marty Padgett's report from the Detroit Auto Show), clawed its way to a rather shocking 225 mph on Bonneville's salt flats last November. No doubt overcoming the insane amount of wind resistance at such speeds was the...Read More»

Prince Albert of Monaco and Mitsubishi iMiEV
Prince of Monaco Serene and Green with iMiEV

Since 2006, Mitsubishi has been hard at work on its new "i MiEV" concept car. (The acronym stands for "Mitsubishi innovative Electric Vehicle"; still no word on what either "i" stands for or why they're lowercase.) Now the company has begun taking the curiously named car on the road--most recently...Read More»

Europe map
Everything Smaller in Europe, Sales Stats Included

In case you're still under the impression that this "market correction" is somehow limited to the USofA, please note: Auto sales in Europe dropped 25 percent from October to November, or about 7.1 percent for the 2008 calendar year. In French, they call that le thud. What's interesting, though, is...Read More»

Bosnia speed sign
The Rules of the Road: Bosnia, Herzegovina Go Graphic

You have to admit, the U.S. has a hit-and-miss record on consumer safety. On the one hand, we don't allow melamine in our dog food. On the other, we have warnings on our cigarette packs like--and I paraphrase--"Smoking may cause lung cancer. Just saying," while other countries devote half the...Read More»

Hyundai diesel R-engine
New Hyundai Diesels to Hit Market in 2010

Yet another round of uber-efficient, squeaky-clean new diesel engines is set to hit the European market. This time from Korean automaker Hyundai, the new "R-engine," reports Autocar, will come in two displacements and boast surprising levels of horsepower. Torque is the bigger diesel story and is...Read More»

2008 Maybach Landaulet
Rumored: Mercedes Association with Aston Martin

The rumor-mill department over at Carscoop reports that U.K.'s CAR magazine claims a possible association between Mercedes-Benz and hallowed British marque Aston Martin. Apparently CAR claims the two icons have been in discussions for quite some time, and the benefits would include joint work on...Read More»

Mazda RX-8 RE
Mazda Hydrogen RX-8 Program Is a Go for Norway

Oh, those Europeans. With their miserly diesels, minuscule four-cylinders, and stringent air-quality standards, it would seem they're a couple of decades ahead in critical efficiency/air-quality measures compared to us here in the United States. They get most of the cool, experimental technology...Read More»

2006 Opel GT
European Automakers Ask EU for $54B Low-Interest Loan

In yet another sign that the current financial crisis is quickly spreading worldwide, the European Automobile Manufacturers Association recently asked the European Union for a 40-billion-euro low-interest loan ($54.5 billion) in part to help them meet increasingly stringent emissions requirements...Read More»

2008 Mitsubishi Colt
Mitsubishi Introduces New Colt: For Europe Only

Mitsubishi Motors uses the Paris Auto Show to formally announce its next-generation Colt, a Europe-only sub-compact model that it last redesigned in 2004. Eschewing the "MPV-like high stance of its predecessor," Mitsubishi says that the Colt's aggressive new nose and a more athletic stance now make...Read More»

Smart fortwo "ed" Is Lithium-Ion Electric Testbed

Marking the 10th anniversary of adorable (if slow) little smart cars roaming the streets, Daimler AG has teamed with NASA and equipped the fortwo with solid rocket boosters enabling the vehicle to launch into space and orbit the earth. A moon landing is planned for 2011. In another zinger, Dr...Read More»

2008 Mercedes-Benz concept FASCINATION
2008 Mercedes-Benz Concept FASCINATION Hits Paris

Long the purveyor of impossibly elegant hardtop coupes like the CL550, Mercedes takes "sense and sensuousness"--Jane Austen is surely rolling in her grave--to a new level in its concept FASCINATION coupe, an early predictor of the next E-Class lineup due in 2010. The mechanicals are based on a...Read More»

2009 Volvo C30
Volvo Confirms 300-HP, AWD C30

Think Volvos are just for soccer moms? Think again. The Swedish purveyor of "safe" has just confirmed plans for a 300-horsepower, all-wheel-drive edition of the Kammback-cool C30 hatch. This is a nice antidote to increasingly bland entries like the V70 (no longer with turbocharged power), and...Read More»

Isetta
Awkward Designs: GEM Peapod vs. Isetta vs. BMW 600

This isn't the first year that pinched pocketbooks and a faltering economy have forced automakers to re-invent and downsize. After WWII, according to Wikipedia, short-distance, economically minded transportation was a huge need in Europe. Enter the Isetta, designed originally in Italy, and...Read More»

Porsche logo
Porsche Claims Control of VW

It's a case of Wolfsburg vs. Stuttgart over in Germany, where privately held automaker Porsche claims "de facto" control over the world's third-largest auto company, VW AG, having gained control of 35.1 percent of voting rights in the German conglomerate. VW, its union workers, and its...Read More»

BMW logo
BMW Microcar Development Confirmed

Driven both by European and U.S. demands, BMW has confirmed development of a car BMW CEO Robert Reithofer has dubbed a "mega city" car that will slot below the 1 Series, currently BMW's smallest offering with its own badge. Quoted in the U.K.'s Autocar, Reithofer claimed that two engines will be...Read More»

Offshore Oil Rig
Question: So, Which Is It, Recession or Speculation?

Citing over-production, OPEC says production will be cut by 520,000 barrels a day over a 40-day period. The oil-rich nations are doing so because of a dramatic and fast slackening in demand for oil, which begs the question: is speculation egging them on, or is the whiff of a deep global recession...Read More»