Tokyo – Automotive Linux Summit – Wednesday May 31, 2017 – Toyota Motor Corp announced that the new 2018 Toyota Camry will be sold in the United States with an infotainment system called…

Toyota Announces a Linux Based Infotainment System for the 2018 Toyota Camry

Tokyo – Automotive Linux Summit – Wednesday May 31, 2017 – Toyota Motor Corp announced that the new 2018 Toyota Camry will be sold in the United States with an infotainment system called the Entune 3.0 that runs on Automotive Grade Linux.

Automotive Grade Linux, also known as AGL, is an open source software platform based on Linux, specifically designed for automobiles. Ten global car manufacturers including Mazda, Ford, Jaguar, Land Rover, Honda and Mitsubishi already use it. The purpose of the initiative is to work with other car companies to try and speed up innovation for vehicle applications. Automakers will have the ability to fully customize the applications without having to rely on Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

When a manufacturer develops a new car it requires around 100 million lines of computer code. Approximately 70 percent of it is generic. This means the remaining 30 percent is customized to the specific model. The amount of coding required is one reason why vehicle development takes so long. It doesn’t stop there however, the code needs to be constantly updated and refined to ensure proper operation. The largest vice for current and past infotainment systems in vehicles is how quickly they become outdated. According to a press release by Toyota VP Keiji Yamamoto the AGL platform gives, “greater connectivity and new functionalities at a pace that is more consistent with consumer technology.”

By working with open source software such as AGL, changes can be made more rapidly and don’t require a manufacturer to write 100 million lines of new code every single time an adjustment needs to be made.

Working with companies like Ford, Mazda, Mitsubishi, and Suzuki will help Toyota minimize costs and development time. Toyota says the partnership can also help create an industry standard that can operate all internal devices such as music, media and navigation. The collaboration with AGL may also allow future integration of technologies such as autonomous driving functions and integrated car services.

Toyota is reducing its dependency on third party companies like Apple and Alphabet (Google/Android Auto) to have greater control of their products. Another reason for Toyota and other car manufacturers to change is to gain control of all the user data. AGL will store all user data that would otherwise be recorded by Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Competitive and innovative infotainment systems are more important now than ever before, and moving to AGL is a bold step for Toyota. If the open source collaboration succeeds, don’t be surprised if other car companies like Audi and Volvo jump ship from Apple and Alphabet.

After a report issued by Daimler on May 10th stating it would no longer be selling the 2017 model diesel cars in the United States. Daimler has since become the center of attention of an investigation…

German Police Investigate Daimler AG Offices

After a report issued by Daimler on May 10th stating it would no longer be selling the 2017 model diesel cars in the United States. Daimler has since become the center of attention of an investigation by German authorities.

Twenty-three prosecutors and 230 German police searched Daimler offices to seek evidence related to the possibility of diesel engine emissions irregularities. The police and prosecutors say 11 sites are being investigated in the German states of Baden-Wuerttemburg, Berlin, Lower Saxony and Saxony with employees that are “known and unknown” to Daimler. Earlier in the year Daimler admitted that some of its employees were part of a criminal investigation.

This investigation comes after a United States federal judge gave the final approval to a settlement for Robert Bosch GmbH to pay $327.5 million USD to American VW diesel car owners. Bosch, the world’s largest car parts supplier, has not admitted to any wrongdoing stating “Bosch neither acknowledges the facts as alleged by the plaintiffs nor does Bosch accept any liability” however, last year it was reported by Reuters that $747 million USD was put aside to cover potential settlements.

Investigators confiscated files and hard drives, apparently containing sensitive information.

Daimler and Bosch are both based in Stuttgart Germany and in a recent quarterly report Daimler said, “Europe and the United States, have inquired about and are investigating test results.”

Last year the U.S. Department of Justice had asked Daimler for an internal investigation to be done because of possible emission irregularities, however, it went mostly unnoticed by German authorities.

Since May 23, the launch of the investigation into Daimler has seen its stock price drop three points. Which may be an indication of further fallout, or it may have more to do with the fact that U.S. President Donald Trump said he would like to impose a 35% import tax on all German cars. This import tax is unlikely to happen as the largest BMW factory in the world is located in Spartanburg County, South Carolina and employs 8,800 Americans and has a current daily output of nearly 1,400 vehicles.

For now though Daimler says they are fully co-operating with the investigation but refuse to comment on the proceedings.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) has announced that it will be recalling 297,000 2011 and 2012 Dodge Grand Caravans in North America to repair wiring that may cause an inadvertent air bag deployment. “Wiring…

Fiat Chrysler Recall 297,000 Dodge Grand Caravans

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) has announced that it will be recalling 297,000 2011 and 2012 Dodge Grand Caravans in North America to repair wiring that may cause an inadvertent air bag deployment.

“Wiring may chafe against pieces of steering-wheel trim, potentially causing a short-circuit,” Fiat Chrysler said. “This may lead to a second short-circuit that is potentially capable of producing inadvertent deployment of the driver-side front air bag.”

According to a statement by the company on Thursday June 15, the problem had caused eight minor injuries.

A spokesman for FCA, Eric Mayne reiterated that this recall has no connection to the Japanese auto supplier Takata. Air bags produced by Takata are the root of the largest ever vehicle related recall in North America.

The recall is expected to start in late July for 209,000 cars in the United States and 88,000 cars in Canada. According to the FCA, dealers will replace the wiring if needed and add a protective sheath. Consumers will not be charged for repairs.

The new 2017 Honda Civic Si goes on sale throughout Canada today, in both two-door Coupe and four-door Sedan body styles. To sport compact fans, the Honda Civic Si is the stuff of legend. In North America…

All-new Honda Civic Si Coupe and Sedan on sale today

The new 2017 Honda Civic Si goes on sale throughout Canada today, in both two-door Coupe and four-door Sedan body styles. To sport compact fans, the Honda Civic Si is the stuff of legend. In North America the "Si" name dates all the way back to 1985 when first introduced as a range-topping CRX, that model now a very collectable two-seat Civic-based coupe. The Si most enthusiasts grew to love came along in 1986 as a special sport-tuned variant of the third-generation Civic Hatchback. Both models incorporated a 91 horsepower, 12-valve, SOHC, 1.5-litre four-cylinder engine driving the front wheels through a five-speed manual gearbox, which was a potent package for the era. The Civic Si has been available for most model years ever since, growing in power and handling prowess while developing a devoted cult-like following amongst sport-compact fans. The most recent ninth-generation 2012–2015 Civic Si was available in Coupe and Sedan forms and boasted 205 horsepower and 174 Read Full Story
It was only a matter of time before Audi anted up with a four-door coupe in the compact luxury D-segment. After all, BMW teased all rivals into this new market segment when unveiling its 4 Series Gran…

New Audi S5 Sportback leads its four-door coupe competitors in performance

It was only a matter of time before Audi anted up with a four-door coupe in the compact luxury D-segment. After all, BMW teased all rivals into this new market segment when unveiling its 4 Series Gran Coupe at the 2014 Geneva motor show and then releasing it as a 2015 model, and Mercedes, which invented the four-door coupe concept with the release of its 2005 CLS, has been stirring up the smaller subcompact luxury class with its diminutive yet strong selling CLA since 2013. Enter the new 2018 A5 Sportback and its S5 Sportback sibling, which like the Ingolstadt, Germany-based brand's A7 and S7 Sportback models are actually five-door coupes thanks to a handy rear liftback. This is the same formula used for the 4 Series Gran Coupe with much success, the only other "premium competitor" to join the two being the upcoming 2018 Buick Regal Sportback (kudos to Buick for bravery). Audi deviates from BMW by delivering an S-badged performance version of its new Sportback, the Bavarian automaker having Read Full Story
As if winning Vincentric’s 5th Annual Best Value in Canada Awards for the Fit subcompact hatchback, CR-V compact SUV, and Odyssey minivan wasn’t enough last year, or for that matter the Odyssey and…

Honda Canada receives five retained value awards

As if winning Vincentric's 5th Annual Best Value in Canada Awards for the Fit subcompact hatchback, CR-V compact SUV, and Odyssey minivan wasn't enough last year, or for that matter the Odyssey and new HR-V subcompact SUV also winning their categories in Vincentric's Lowest Cost to Own in Canada awards, ALG recently recognized the Fit, CR-V, Odyssey and Accord at the Canadian International Auto Show in Toronto for its 2017 Best Residual Value awards program. Winners of ALG Canadian Residual Value Awards are chosen after the third-party analytical firm studies the competition within each vehicle segment, as well as historical vehicle performance and industry trends. Additionally, vehicle quality, production numbers relative to demand, pricing, and marketing strategies are factored in. Retained value is important because the actual price you pay for a vehicle is the difference between the cost at the point of purchase and what you receive back for it when it's traded in or sold later. With Read Full Story
Audi achieved multiple victories in the Canadian Black Book 10th annual 2017 Best Retained Value Awards, winning the “Luxury Car” prize with its sleek A7 four-door coupe, while also earning second…

Audi does well in CBB and ALG best retained value awards

Audi achieved multiple victories in the Canadian Black Book 10th annual 2017 Best Retained Value Awards, winning the "Luxury Car" prize with its sleek A7 four-door coupe, while also earning second place in the same category with the popular A5 sport coupe and convertible. Additionally, Audi's Q5 once again ran away with the "Compact Luxury SUV" segment, and TT held onto second in the "Sports Car" class. "Depreciation is the single largest expense of owning a vehicle, more than gas, maintenance or insurance," said Brian Murphy, VP Research and Editorial, Canadian Black Book. "Understanding your vehicle's retained value is extremely important for anyone researching to buy, sell or trade-in any vehicle." In other words, the real price paid for a car is the difference between the cost of purchase and what's left over when that vehicle is traded in or sold later. It's also important to understand that CBB's "2017" Best Retained Value Awards are focused on 2013 model year vehicles. Vehicle values Read Full Story
Everyone in business understands that saving money is just as important as increasing revenue, with real earnings, or profits found in between. No wonder business leaders love Land Rover. ALG, an analytics…

Land Rover number one in ALG Residual Value Awards

Everyone in business understands that saving money is just as important as increasing revenue, with real earnings, or profits found in between. No wonder business leaders love Land Rover. ALG, an analytics subsidiary of TrueCar, recently named Land Rover with top Overall Brand Honours in ALG's 9th Annual Canadian Residual Value Awards (RVA) within the Premium Brand sector. "Residual values are a key indicator of the overall market success and health of a vehicle and brand. Whether a consumer is looking to purchase or lease a vehicle, the largest cost consideration is how much a vehicle will retain its value over time," said Jim Nguyen, president of ALG. "And with vehicle leasing on the rise, resale values have never been more important to both consumers and automakers." The RVA forecasts brands and models that will most likely retain highest average values when compared to their original Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) after three years. This was the third consecutive year Read Full Story