Category Archives: Auto News

News Wire: Buick’s Secret to Better Driving – OnStar Smart Driver

(this article originally appeared on Buick.com)

After enrolling in OnStar Smart Driver, customers with eligible vehicles receive ongoing driving behavior feedback, such as hard braking, hard acceleration, late night driving, distance driven, time spent idle, speeds over 80 mph, average MPG and average MPH, as well as helpful tips to enhance their driving skills. This is compiled into an overall OnStar Smart Driver score, which can be compared anonymously against other drivers enrolled in the service. ©️ General Motors
After enrolling in OnStar Smart Driver, customers with eligible vehicles receive ongoing driving behavior feedback, such as hard braking, hard acceleration, late night driving, distance driven, time spent idle, speeds over 80 mph, average MPG and average MPH, as well as helpful tips to enhance their driving skills. This is compiled into an overall OnStar Smart Driver score, which can be compared anonymously against other drivers enrolled in the service. ©️ General Motors

 

DETROIT — With OnStar Smart Driver, your Buick can now work with you to develop better driving skills. This recently launched opt-in service is available for most 2015-17 model year Buick vehicles as part of the OnStar Basic Plan1 at no additional cost.

OnStar Smart Driver is designed to help Buick owners maximize their vehicle’s overall performance, reduce wear and tear, monitor fuel efficiency and become better drivers – all factors that can help save owners money as well.

Once enrolled, customers have online access via OnStar.com to information about their driving behavior, including:

  • OnStar Smart Driver score – calculated with driving data that can be sorted by day, week, month, year and lifetime
  • Historical OnStar Smart Driver scores
  • Total number of hard braking events and where they took place
  • Total number of hard acceleration events and where they took place
  • High-speed driving percentage
  • Late-night driving percentage
  • Total miles driven
  • Average MPG and MPH
  • Comparisons to the aggregate total of all other enrolled drivers
  • Helpful tips on how to become a smarter driver

Customers may also choose to enroll in the Insurance Discounts Eligibility2 portion of the service, which is a risk-free way to see if their driving behavior qualifies them for discounts, without revealing any personal details to insurance companies.

Participating insurance companies currently include Progressive, Liberty Mutual and Nationwide, and good driving behavior can lead to potential savings of up to 30 percent on car insurance.

1 OnStar Basic Plan is available for five years from the delivery date of eligible 2015 model year and newer vehicles and is transferable. Basic Plan does not include Emergency, Security or Navigation services; these and other services require a paid plan. Visit onstar.com for details.

2 OnStar, General Motors and their affiliates are not insurance providers and are not insurance producers, and do not endorse any particular insurance provider or insurance producer. You should only obtain insurance and insurance advice from a licensed insurance provider.

Read the entire article on Buick.com!

 

News Wire: 2017 Buick Envision AWD Earns 5-Star Overall Vehicle Score for Safety Rating by NHTSA

(this article originally appeared on Buick.com)

2017 Buick Envision ©️ General Motors
2017 Buick Envision ©️ General Motors

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) Top Safety Pick+ rating extended into 2017 when vehicle is equipped with front crash prevention and high intensity headlights

DETROIT — The 2017 Buick Envision AWD compact SUV has earned a five-star overall vehicle score from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) — an accolade achieved by every Buick model rated for two consecutive model years.1

Earlier this year, the Envision also earned the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s (IIHS) best possible rating, a 2016 IIHS Top Safety Pick+ (TSP+) when equipped with optional front crash prevention. Today that rating was extended into the 2017 calendar year as the Envision with optional front crash prevention and high intensity discharge (HID) headlights was named a 2017 IIHS Top Safety Pick+.

“Safety, quality and craftsmanship are designed into every Buick,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick Sales, Service and Marketing. “Earning top ratings from some of the industry’s most important safety organizations validates not only the excellence of the Envision, but further builds the Buick brand’s reputation as a leader in safety and quality, two attributes high on every shopper’s list.”

The Envision offers customers an extensive list of standard and available safety features, both active and passive. These safety technologies utilize a combination of five cameras and 13 radar and ultrasonic sensors around the vehicle to help offer owners peace of mind behind the wheel. Envision also features a robust body structure that incorporates extensive use of mass-reducing high-strength steel.

Envision’s available Forward Collision Alert and Forward Automatic Braking systems, which can help drivers avoid collisions, were vital to obtaining the 2016 IIHS TSP+ rating. That rating requires a vehicle to score Good on a multitude of IIHS crashworthiness tests and receive an Advanced or Superior score on front crash prevention, which was a new IIHS requirement in 2016. The 2017 IIHS TSP+ rating requires a vehicle to earn Good ratings in the crashworthiness tests, an Advanced or Superior rating for front crash prevention and a Good or Acceptable headlight rating.

Read the entire article on Buick.com!

 

News Wire: GMC and Chevrolet Expand Alternative Fuel Fleet Offerings

(this article originally appeared on GMC.com)

Expanded CNG/LPG lineup broadens fuel diversification choices

DETROIT — GMC and Chevrolet announced today that they are partnering with Power Solutions International, Inc. (PSI) to introduce heavy-duty pickups and full-size vans powered by 6.0-liter V-8 compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG)-capable engines starting in the first quarter of 2017. Chevrolet also will offer CNG and LPG versions of its new Low Cab Forward commercial truck.

The announcement follows the selection of PSI, based in Wood Dale, Illinois, as General Motors Fleet’s preferred upfitter for CNG and LPG trucks. PSI is one of North America’s largest and most experienced providers of integrated turnkey alternative-fuel powertrain solutions.

Ship-through will be offered, allowing customers to seamlessly order and take delivery from the same dealer. GM will supply vehicles equipped with the 6.0L V-8 engine with hardened valves and valve seats to PSI, which in turn will install the fuel system and other hardware and ship directly to Chevrolet and GMC dealers in all 50 states. All PSI-modified vehicles are covered by Chevrolet and GMC’s five-year/60,000-mile (whichever comes first) limited powertrain warranty.

The expanded lineup brings GM Fleet’s portfolio of alternative fuel, hybrid and EVs to more than a dozen trucks, cars and crossovers. Other recent additions include the Chevrolet Bolt EV, a Duramax 2.8-liter B20-capable Duramax diesel for the Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana vans and all-new available 6.6-liter B20-capable Duramax diesel engines for the Chevrolet Silverado HD and GMC Sierra HD.

“Expanding choice is the key to helping more commercial and government fleets reduce their fuel consumption, fuel costs and emissions using alternative fuels and EVs versus using traditional gasoline,” said Ed Peper, U.S. vice president of GM Fleet. “There are no ‘one size fits all’ solutions for fleet managers.”

GM Fleet’s partnership with PSI follows customer demand and ongoing investment by companies across the nation in CNG refueling infrastructure.

Read the entire article on GMC.com!

Buick Expands Cascada Sport Touring Appeal With New Sport Red Exterior

(This article originally appeared on Buick.com)

Sport Red 2017 Cascada Sport Touring with Dark Effects Package © General Motors
Sport Red 2017 Cascada Sport Touring with Dark Effects Package © General Motors

New model includes exclusive Dark Effects package

HOLLYWOOD, Calif. — When Buick introduced the all-new Cascada convertible early this year, it was an invitation to drivers who want to live life wide open with features unexpected in a convertible. In a market devoid of options, the Cascada has found success by offering a quiet, three-layer insulated top and stress-reducing engineering at a price that leaves room in your budget to explore the open road. Cascada also has the honor of being the first 2017 convertible to receive a 5-Star Overall Vehicle Score for Safety from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration1.

In the months since the Cascada launched, its competitive set hasn’t grown, but choice within the Cascada portfolio has. The latest sport touring color introduction — Sport Red — is the response to customers who asked for a brilliant shade of red.

“We’ve heard it from customers all year: ‘What a beautiful car. Can I get it in red?’ Well yes, now you can,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick Sales, Service and Marketing. “This new addition to the Cascada portfolio offers a modern style statement with blacked-out exterior trim and red interior stitching.”

Exterior styling is a top consideration for customers, and the Cascada’s new Dark Effects package makes a unique statement. The package features a gloss-black finish on the grille, mirror caps and 20-inch wheels, as well as body-color trim across the decklid. Inside, new red stitching adds contrast to the instrument panel, doors and seats. The package is paired exclusively with the new Sport Red exterior color and is available only on the Cascada Sport Touring model in limited volume — 150 initial vehicles will arrive starting February 1, 2017.

The new Sport Touring Cascada in Sport Red with the exclusive Dark Effects package is the second unique expression added to Buick’s convertible lineup this year. Earlier this fall, the 2017 Cascada Sport Touringlaunched with a vibrant True Blue exterior color, an exclusive new 20-inch wheel design and sporty interior trim.

Read the entire article on Buick.com!

 

 

Customers Rank Buick Highest Among Mass Market Brands for Sales Satisfaction

(this article originally appeared on Buick.com)

J.D. Power study notes new owner education key to higher satisfaction

DETROIT – As Buick continues to delight customers with its beautiful, whisper-quiet and quality-driven cars and SUVs, it is also ensuring they have the greatest possible experience learning about their vehicles. J.D. Power’s 2016 U.S. Sales Satisfaction Index (SSI) Study ranks Buick the highest among mass market brands.

A brand’s ability to help new-vehicle owners understand technology and enhance the overall ownership experience are key to high SSI rankings. In brand sales satisfaction rankings, Buick earned the highest marks with a score of 809 (based on a 1,000-point scale).

“We know a positive customer experience goes well beyond great product,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick Sales, Service and Marketing. “Our sales satisfaction ranking shows that our ability to deliver a meaningful purchase-to-ownership process is paying off for our customers well beyond when they leave our stores.”

The SSI Study is a comprehensive analysis of the new-vehicle purchase experience that measures customer satisfaction with their dealer. It is based on responses from nearly 29,000 buyers who purchased or leased their new vehicle in April or May of 2016.

Read the entire article on Buick.com!

Do you know when seat belts became standard?

Do you know when seat belts became standard? Consider this a history lesson. I found it pretty fascinating. I can’t guarantee you will too, but if you have kids, have them read it. In my opinion, the seat belt is one of the greatest automotive inventions second only to the internal combustion engine.

DFW, did you know that there were no seat belts in cars when most of the ”baby boomer” generation was born, post World War II.  For that matter, there weren’t any Interstate Highways either.  That was a program championed by President Eisenhower after he took office in 1953.  Here’s an interesting time line.

In 1956, Ford tried, unsuccessfully, to interest Americans in purchasing safer cars with their Lifeguard safety package. (Its attempt nevertheless earned Ford Motor Trend’s “Car of the Year” award for 1956.)

In 1958, the United Nations established the World Forum for Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations, an international standards body advancing auto safety. Many of the most life saving safety innovations, like seat belts and roll cage construction were brought to market under its auspices. That same year, Volvo engineer Nils Bohlin invented and patented the three-point lap and shoulder seat belt, which became standard equipment on all Volvo cars in 1959. Over the next several decades, three-point safety belts were gradually mandated in all vehicles by regulators throughout the industrialized world.

In 1966, the U.S. established the United States Department of Transportation (DOT) with automobile safety one of its purposes. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) was created as an independent organization on April 1, 1967, but was reliant on the DOT for administration and funding. However, in 1975 the organization was made completely independent by the Independent Safety Board Act.

Volvo developed the first rear-facing child seat in 1964 and introduced its own booster seat in 1978.

In 1979, NHTSA began crash-testing popular cars and publishing the results, to inform consumers and encourage manufacturers to improve the safety of their vehicles. Initially, the US NCAP crash tests examined compliance with occupant-protection provisions. Over the subsequent years, this NHTSA program was gradually expanded in scope. In 1997, the European New Car Assessment Program (Euro NCAP) was established to test new vehicles’ safety performance and publish the results for vehicle shoppers’ information. The NHTSA crash tests are presently operated and published as the U.S. branch of the international NCAP program.

In 1984, New York State passed the first US law requiring seat belt use in passenger cars. Seat belt laws have since been adopted by all 50 states, and NHTSA estimates increased seat belt use as a result save 10,000 per year in the USA.  In fact, fewer people died in on US roads and highways in 2008 (37,261) than in 1952 (37,500), despite an enormous increase in the number of drivers on the road.

Here’s what happens when you don’t wear your seat belt.

Hope you enjoyed this little history lesson from Freeman Grapevine.  Now buckle up, or you might be History.

10 Most Stolen Vehicles In the United States

Although car thefts have seemingly gone down in recent years, the fact of the matter is that they are in a flux point in part due to modern security systems. Modern vehicles have seen an increase in the quality of security that is provided for them. Namely the keys themselves now have a chip in the key itself with a code that tells the car, “Yes. I am the correct key for this vehicle.” Sounds pretty fool-proof huh? well car thieves are now starting to find ways around this added precaution, which sometime requires the participation of a third party at a locksmith, or unsecured dealership. However, since the thieves tactics have gotten a little more complicated, the model years of the cars being stolen have been surprising older.

So, what do auto thieves like to steal? It seems the older the better. The National Insurance Crime Bureau (NICB) has released Hot Wheels, its list of the 10 most-stolen vehicles in the United States

I can only imagine that having your car stolen is an awful feeling. If you saw a car you own on the list in the video, just take extra precautions when parking it. Don’t leave anything of value in your car. Remember, older vehicles are the ones being stolen at the moment, so we ask that you be aware and lock your vehicle, always…Hey, maybe it’s time to break out The Club.

2016 Buick Global Sales Pass 1 Million at Record Pace

(This article originally appeared on Buick.com)

23 percent year-over-year growth highest among major international brands

DETROIT ― Through September, global Buick deliveries worldwide totaled 1,046,746 vehicles for 2016. At no other point in the brand’s 113 years of business has this milestone been reached so quickly. Compared to the same span in 2015, nearly 200,000 more customers have taken delivery of a new Buick car or SUV.

Buick’s year-over-year growth of 23 percent is the highest in the industry for major brands selling vehicles in both North America and China. With three months left in the year, Buick is on track for its fourth consecutive all-time global sales record.

“Demand worldwide continues to grow for attainable Buick luxury and the beautiful, quiet and comfortable cars and SUVs we offer,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick Sales, Service and Marketing. “We complement that driving experience with customer service that consistently ranks among the highest in the industry.”

Buick currently ranks as the second-largest passenger-car brand in China and outsells key competitors including Acura, Audi, Infiniti and Lincoln in North America. In the U.S, year-to-date retail sales are the highest in 11 years.

Buick’s modern, smart SUV lineup is fueling the nameplate’s international growth. The compact Envision is on pace for more than 200,000 global sales in its second year in the market. Sales in North America began in May and demand has been strong, with Envisions averaging just 23 days on dealer lots. That’s far below the industry average of 65 days.

The Encore small SUV has increased its global sales each year since its launch less than four years ago and had its best U.S. sales month ever in September with 7,197 deliveries. A redesigned 2017 Encore just started arriving at dealerships with a standard 8-inch touchscreen, 4G LTE Wi-Fi, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto ― a suite of connectivity features not offered by any competitor.

Read the entire article on Buick.com.

GMC Introduces Sierra HD All Terrain X

(This article originally appeared on GMC.com)

2017 GMC Sierra 2500HD All Terrain X © General Motors
2017 GMC Sierra 2500HD All Terrain X © General Motors

Third model in brand’s X series offered with all-new Duramax 6.6L diesel

AUSTIN, Texas — GMC today introduced the 2017 Sierra HD All Terrain X, the most off-road-capable model in the Sierra HD lineup, and one that matches its enhanced capability with trail-ready style and the brand’s signature refinement.

It joins Canyon and Sierra 1500 this fall as the third model in GMC’s distinctive, limited-edition All Terrain X series, offered on the Sierra 2500HD crew cab 4WD with a 6.0L gas V-8 engine or the all-new, next-generation Duramax 6.6L V-8 turbo-diesel. More powerful than ever, the new Duramax delivers a segment-topping SAE-certified 445 hp (332 kW) and an SAE-certified 910 lb.-ft. of torque (1,234 Nm).

“The new Sierra HD All Terrain X’s powerful attitude reflects a popular trend in very capable off-road trucks, executed with a range-topping level of refinement — a combination of attributes GMC has cultivated for years,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of GMC Sales and Marketing. “And with the new, available Duramax 6.6L, this truck more than matches its bold good looks with true professional-grade capability.”

The All Terrain X’s customized appearance blends a premium package of monochromatic exterior trim and special equipment, complemented with GMC’s latest technologies. Content includes:

  • 18-inch black-painted aluminum wheels
  • LT275/65R18 Goodyear Duratrac MT-rated tires that feature an aggressive tread pattern for outstanding off-road performance
  • A unique body-color grille surround with All Terrain insert
  • Body-color door handles and bodyside moldings
  • Black power-adjustable heated and power-folding trailering mirrors with integrated turn signals, LED rear guidance lamps and LED amber clearance lamps
  • Black belt moldings, front bumper skidplate and B-pillars
  • 4-inch black sport side steps
  • Black sport bar (mounted in the bed) designed to support available GMC Accessories LED off-road driving lamps
  • Offered in Black Onyx and Summit White exterior colors

Read the entire article on GMC.com! 

Avenir Sub-Brand to Represent Highest Expression of Buick Luxury

(this article originally appeared on Buick.com)

Buick Avenir Sub-Brand  © General Motors
Buick Avenir Sub-Brand © General Motors

Concept car-inspired models will join global portfolio in 2018 model year

DETROIT – Across continents, a growing set of new customers are discovering unexpected and attainable luxury experiences from Buick. Soon, those customers will be introduced to a new Avenir sub-brand designed to grow with the needs of future luxury buyers.

The Avenir sub-brand is inspired by Buick’s evolving customer base. The brand has grown quickly with female buyers, and one in two Buick customers today are coming from competitive brands. They’re expecting a high-end experience and premium quality. For example, 90 percent of Enclave buyers purchase one of the top two trim levels.

This year, an unprecedented number of new global products such as the Envision compact SUV and the 2017 LaCrosse sedan offer an elevated luxury experience that’s encouraging new car buyers to reassess what they know about Buick.

“Through the first half of 2016, Buick has been the industry’s fastest-growing major international brand, and Avenir is key to future growth and delivering on the high expectations of new customers coming to our showrooms,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick Sales, Service and Marketing. “Avenir will be Buick’s signature. The highest expression of the luxury experiences we’re delivering now and in the future.”

Avenir vehicles will add distinct touches to Buick’s timeless, sculpted designs, including a three-dimensional mesh grille, large-diameter wheels, and unique trim finishes. Inside, Avenir models will enhance the brand’s quiet, inviting environment with unique seat details, modern trim materials and Avenir script identification.

The name “Avenir,” French for “future,” is taken from the award-winning concept sedan from 2015. That concept and this year’s Avista coupe concept — from which the new sub-brand borrows its grille pattern — have served as guideposts for designers sketching and modeling Buick’s future.

Read the entire article on Buick.com!