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Japanese brands top annual vehicle-dependability study

Ford also did well in J.D. Power & Associates’ rankings of 2009 model-year vehicles after three years on the road, while most other U.S. and European makers were below average.

If you are in the market for a late-model used car, look for Japanese-built vehicles, be selective of American brands, and buy European with caution.


Tesla will help develop new electric Mercedes-Benz

Electric car company Tesla Motors Inc. announced a deal to provide the powertrain for a new Mercedes-Benz vehicle, even as it moves closer to manufacturing its own vehicles later this year.

Attorneys general win more time to ponder Honda Civic settlement

Five states including California won more time to decide whether they will object to a proposed class-action settlement between Honda and owners of its Civic hybrid who contend they were misled about the car’s fuel economy.

Auto registration study reveals red state, blue state leanings

R.L. Polk’s auto registration study says domestic cars do better in red states, with Ford at No. 1. But who buys Kias or Toyotas is not so straightforward.

Republicans buy Kias and Democrats lean to Hyundais.

Probe opened into fires in Chevy Trailblazer driver’s side doors

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is investigating data for about 309,000 Trailblazers made in 2006 and 2007.

Federal safety investigators have announced their second probe in less than a week involving fires starting in the driver’s side doors of vehicles.

Saturday Drive: The designer behind Aston Martin’s V-12 Zagato

Start off your weekend of motoring with a quick take on what’s grabbed our attention recently.

The car: Aston Martin V-12 Zagato

Tesla announces Model X SUV for 2014, starts taking deposits

The electric SUV will share a platform, components and technology with Tesla’s electric Model S sedan, which is slated to go into production this year.

Tesla Motors Inc. has yet to deliver the much-touted Model S — the electric sedan it is making at its auto factory in Fremont, Calif. — but that didn’t stop […]

Safety regulators probe Camry, RAV-4 fires; Nissan recalls Versa

Federal safety regulators have launched an investigation into the cause of fires in 2007 model year Toyota Camry sedans and RAV-4 sport utility vehicles.

BMW agrees to pay $3 million in penalties over recalls

Federal safety regulators had accused the automaker of filing late and incomplete reports about defects during recalls in 2010.

BMW has agreed to pay $3 million in civil penalties to settle a claim that the automaker failed to report safety defects in a timely and complete manner.


Ford replaces 2 executives, gives no hint of Mulally retirement

Lewis Booth, executive vice president and CFO at Ford, and Derrick Kuzak, vice president of global product development, will retire April 1. No word on a succession plan for CEO Alan Mulally.

Ford Motor Co. announced a series of senior management changes but gave no hint to who might succeed Alan Mulally as the automaker’s […]