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2012-12-19

TRUCKERS' FATALITIES * USA

* Missouri - Truck occupant fatalities up 20 percent 

Green Valley,MO,USA -Land Line, by Jami Jones -12 Dec 2012: -- Deaths of truck occupants increased in 2011 by 20 percent, underscoring what OOIDA says is a need for cab crashworthiness standards... In 2011, 635 truck occupants died in large-truck crashes, according to a report released this week by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. That is 105 more people than in 2010... That trend runs counter to the decline in occupant fatalities in passenger vehicles and light trucks. The report shows declines in the number of fatalities of the occupants of passenger cars and light trucks, dropping 4.6 and 4.1 percent respectively in 2011... Overall fatalities as a result of large-truck crashes ticket up 1.9 percent overall with fatalities of the occupants of other vehicles involved in those crashes dropping 3.6 percent... The statistics released by NHTSA do not account for the vehicle miles traveled by large trucks. Any uptick in the number of miles traveled by the trucking industry will result in a decline in the overall fatality rates of large-truck crashes...

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TRUCKMAKERS NEWS * USA & Canada

* Canada and USA - Chrysler Canada: Ram Truck Confirms All-New Commercial Van 

(Photo: Ram Truck adds full size ProMaster van to new commercial division) 
Dearborn,MICH,USA -Automotive News -10 Dec 2012: -- Ram Truck, Canada’s Longest-Lasting Line of Pickups and supplier of Canada’s Best-Selling Diesel Pickups, announced today that it will develop a new large van for the North American market. This new van will serve to further strengthen Ram’s competitive prowess in a growing commercial market and will add to its ongoing commitment of delivering the best value, capability and technology to commercial customers across Canada... The 2014 Ram ProMaster will go on sale beginning in the 3rd quarter 2013 and will join the smaller, but highly capable Ram Cargo Van as an additional van offering to compete with other full-size commercial vans... Based on the successful Fiat Ducato, the Ram ProMaster will be significantly redesigned with familiar Ram Truck styling cues, offering features and powertrains preferred by North American commercial customers...

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CARMAKERS NEWS * USA

* Michigan - GM buys back $5.5 billion in stock from the U.S. Government

(Photo: General Motors Renaissance Center,Detroit, Michigan)
Detroit,MICH,USA -The Car connection, by Richard Read -Dec 19, 2012: -- General Motors has announced plans to buy back some of its stock from the U.S. Department of the Treasury, reducing the federal government's stake in the automaker by 40%... In a press release, GM says that it will purchase 200 million shares of common stock from the Treasury -- a significant chunk of the 500 million shares that the feds currently own. GM will pay a total of $5.5 billion for the stock, which works out to $27.50 per share, or nearly 8% more than yesterday's closing price of $25.49. The purchase is expected to be finalized by December 31...


* Michigan - GM reveals redesigned GMC Sierra and Chevrolet Silverado pickup trucks

(Photo: 2014 GMC Sierra 1500 and corporate cousin Chevrolet Silverado 1500 models boast distinctive brand styling)
Detroit,MICH,USA -Fleet Owner -Dec. 14, 2012: -- General Motors rolled out its newly redesigned Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and GMC Sierra 1500 light-duty pickup trucks here yesterday... While the two new trucks are arguably more differentiated from each other in looks than their predecessor models, both the 2014 Sierra and Silverado boast a new family of fuel-efficient yet powerful EcoTec3 gasoline engines as well as dramatically styled exteriors and cabs described as quieter as well as more comfortable and functional... A key distinguishing feature of both the Sierra and Silverado 1500 models are the trio of EcoTec3 engines—V6 4.3-liter, V6 5.3-liter and V8 6.2-liter...


* Michigan - GM teases new Cadillac ELR plug-in electric coupe

(Photo from General Motors: GM revealed an image of its extended-range electric Cadillac ELR on Tuesday)
Detroit,MICH,USA -The Detroit News, by Melissa Burden -December 18, 2012: -- General Motors Co. is teasing its new Cadillac ELR plug-in electric luxury coupe that will be unveiled next month at the North American International Auto Show... An image of the extended-range electric ELR was distributed Tuesday, which included text that read "its confidently sculpted lines are as dramatic as the technology they conceal — a state-of-the-art electric propulsion system featuring a ranging-extending, gas-powered generator"...


* Indiana - Chrysler considers plants, production boost 

 Kokomo,IND,USA -Associated Press/The Detroit News -December 18, 2012: -- Chrysler Group is planning to potentially add 400 jobs at three existing central Indiana factories while also starting up a new plant nearby with perhaps 850 workers... The Kokomo City Council voted Monday night to approve property tax breaks requested by Chrysler for $212 million in new equipment for its factories in the city. Tipton County officials also endorsed a similar request on Chrysler's $162 million plans to complete a vacant factory along U.S. 31...


* Kansas - GM idling plant until January to reduce Malibu inventory

Kansas City,KAN,USA -The Detroit News, by Melissa Burden -December 17, 2012: -- General Motors Co. is idling its Fairfax Assembly Plant in Kansas City, Kan., for all of December and into early January to help trim inventories of the Chevrolet Malibu, a union official said Monday... Automotive News earlier Monday reported the Fairfax plant was not producing vehicles last week and this week, in addition to traditional holiday downtime... The plant employs about 3,500 hourly workers who build the Malibu and the Buick LaCrosse sedans. A note on UAW Local 31's website says the plant will not run Jan. 2-4 and most workers will return Jan. 7...


- AUTOS RECALLS -

* USA - Honda Recalls 807,000 Minivans, SUVs in U.S. for rollaway problem

(Photo: 2003 Honda Odyssey)
Torrance,CA,USA -The Car Connection, by Suzanne Kane -Dec 13, 2012: -- Honda is certain recalling 2003 and 2004 model year Odyssey minivans and Pilot SUVs and Acura MDX SUVs from the 2003 through 2006 model years for an ignition interlock issue that may lead to a vehicle rollaway when the keys are removed... A notice on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) website puts the number of vehicles potentially affected in the U.S. at 807,161. The number includes approximately 318,000 Honda Odysseys, 259,000 Honda Pilots and 230,000 Acura MDX SUVs. Affected vehicles were built from November 26, 2001 through August 30, 2006...



* Michigan - 2013 Dodge Durango recalled for incorrect seating capacity labels

Auburn Hills,MICH,USA -The Car connection,by Suzanne Kane -Dec 17, 2012: -- Chrysler is recalling certain 2013 model-year Dodge Durango crossover SUVs that may have incorrect seating capacity information labels... A notice on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) website puts the number of vehicles potentially affected at 734. The 2013 Dodge Durangos involved in the recall were built from April 27, 2012 through September 14, 2012...

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2012-12-18

SAFETY ROADS * USA

* DC - Highway Deaths Drop to 62-Year-Low

Washington,DC,USA -The Detroit Bureau, by Paul A. Eisenstein -Dec.10, 2012: -- Traffic fatalities fell to their lowest level in more than six decades last year, according to a new analysis by federal regulators, continuing a decade-long decline – though there are some preliminary signs that the death rate may have turned back upward in 2012... The ongoing decline appears to show the benefits of the latest advanced safety technology, like electronic stability control – some of which can “compensate for poor judgment” — as well as increased usage of simpler, time-tested devices such as seatbelts. Experts also give credit to increased enforcement, especially the crackdown on drunk driving. Yet another factor, though, may also be the medical knowledge gained from two long wars... According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, highway deaths dipped to 32,367 during 2011. That was down 1.9% from the previous year and comes in as the lowest number since 1949. The fatality rate averaged 1.10 deaths per-100-million-miles-driven , the lowest figure ever seen during nearly a century of government record-keeping...


* DC - Safety board urges car locks for all drunken drivers

(Photo: AP) 
Washington,DC,USA -USA Today, by Bart Jansen -11 Dec 2012: -- All people convicted of drunken driving in the country should have interlocks installed on their cars to prevent a repeat offense, the National Transportation Safety Board unanimously recommended on Tuesday.The recommendation to state legislatures, which is non-binding, goes to 33 states that don't currently require interlock devices for all convicted offenders. The other 17 already require the devices, which are aimed at deterring repeat offenses.Interlocks are devices typically mounted on the vehicle's dashboard, which require motorists to breathe into them, to test whether they have consumed alcohol. The device won't allow the vehicle to start until the motorist passes the test...   The board's recommendation was based on a study of accidents involving wrong-way drivers, such as entering a highway on an exit ramp or simply veering into the opposing lane of traffic.The study found that these crashes, which usually occur at night or on weekends, kill an average of 360 people each year in 260 accidents. Overall, about 10,000 die each year in accidents with drunken drivers...


* DC - NHTSA: Data recorders 'essential' to auto safety 

Washington,DC,USA -The Detroit News, by David Shepardson -December 19, 2012: -- The Obama administration's top auto safety regulator said automotive black boxes are essential to auto safety and said the government will protect motorists' privacy... In a Detroit News interview, National Highway Traffic Safety Administrator, David Strickland, said he also opposed on/off switches that could allow motorists to turn off event data recorders, saying it would be a "horrible thing for safety."... Earlier this month, NHTSA proposed requiring all vehicles built after September 2014 to have event data recorders that capture information before and after a crash... The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, the trade association representing Detroit's Big Three, has also called for privacy protections...

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ENGINE MAKERS NEWS * USA & Canada

* Indiana - Cummins Builds Two-Millionth Ram Diesel For Chrysler Group 

Columbus,IND,USA -Automotive World -10 Dec 2012: -- Cummins Inc. has produced its 2-millionth diesel engine for Ram Trucks, highlighting the latest milestone in a storied partnership that spans four decades... The 350-horsepower, 6.7-liter, in-line 6-cylinder turbo diesel is distinguished by its “Cummins Red” rocker cover and breather. But despite its 800 lb.-ft. peak torque rating, the historic engine – feted today at a Cummins plant in Columbus, Ind. – will not see service. Instead, it will go on display, touring the U.S.... Cummins began supplying engines to Chrysler Group in 1988. Today in North America, only Ram-brand pickups and chassis cabs feature the coveted Cummins “C” logo...

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TRUCKMAKERS NEWS * WORLDWIDE

* France - Renault Sells Its 6.5% Stake in Volvo

(Photo by Bruce Harmon/Trans Pixs) 
Paris,France -Bloomberg/Transport Topics -13 Dec 2012: -- French automaker Renault SA sold its remaining 6.5% stake in Volvo AB for about $1.92 billion, ending an 11-year run as Volvo’s largest owner... Renault sold its holdings at about $13.80 a share — about 3.8% below Wednesday’s closing price of about $14.40 per share. Volvo, Gothenberg, Sweden, trades it shares in Swedish kronor... Renault sold the shares to reduce its debt and invest in France, Russia and China, the company said in a statement... It had sold a 14.9% stake in Volvo in 2010 for about $4 billion... 


* Russia - KAMAZ truck makers to embrace robotics

(Photo: RIA Novosti) 
Moscow,Russia -The Voice of Russia, by Oleg Nekhai -Dec 17, 2012: -- Russia’s biggest truck-makers KAMAZ, based in Tatarstan, have announced the start of a $600mln project to equip their assembly lines with robots which would correct flaws discovered in truck parts by laser-aided build-up welding... The suppliers are laser-makers IRE-Polus, based in Fryazino near Moscow, and robotic software developers Eidos, based in Kazan. Delivery on the order is expected next year. Similar robots made in Japan tackle vehicle parts weighing under 200 grams. KAMAZ’s robots will be capable of tackling parts weighing up to 50 kilograms...


* India - Navistar Selling Stake in Indian Joint Venture 

Mumbai,Maharashtra,India -Transport Topics -18 Dec 2012: -- Indian truck maker Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd. plans to purchase Navistar International Corp.’s stake in the two companies’ Indian joint venture for about $33 million... Following the proposed purchase, Mahindra Navistar Automotives Ltd. and Mahindra Navistar Engines Pvt Ltd. would become wholly owned subsidiaries of Mahindra, the two companies said in a statement... The sale, which requires regulatory approval in India, is expected to be completed in early 2013, said the two companies, which entered into a joint-venture agreement in 2005...

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TRUCKS MARKETS NEWS * WORLDWIDE

* China - Heavy truck sales continue to fall in November 

(Photo: The terrain in central and western China is formidable. Bumpy, two-lane roads winding around mountains cause perpetual traffic jams) 
Shanghai,SH,China -Gasgoo, by Carmen Lee -December 12, 2012: ... According to a cvworld.cn report appearing today, a total of 44,500 heavy trucks were sold in November. Although the number represents slight growth of two percent from October, it is still a full 20.6 percent less than last November's reported figure. November marks the sixth consecutive month that Chinese truck sales have failed to exceed 50,000 units... The vast majority of manufacturers saw their truck sales fall over the month. The top three manufacturers, Dongfeng Commercial Vehicle, Sinotruck and FAW, reported monthly sales of 9,600 trucks, 6,500 trucks and 7,950 trucks, respectively. Those results translate to negative year-on-year sales growth rates of 19.1 percent, one percent and 28.2 percent. They were followed by Foton Auman (6,500 truck sales), Shacman (5,600), Jianghuai (2,000), Beijing Benz (1,500), SAIC Iveco Hongyan (1,500) and Valin (1,002)...

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CARMAKERS NEWS * USA

* Michigan - Detroit carmakers offer 4-figure price incentives


(Photo from Ford: Incentives offer $5,000 off some Ford Taurus models) 
Detroit,MICH,USA -The Detroit News, by Bryce G. Hoffman -December 17, 2012: -- As 2012 comes to a close, automakers are offering some pretty attractive offers on cars and trucks... Last week, a man waved a sign in front of Matthews-Hargreaves Chevrolet in Royal Oak that promised "Rebates up to $8,000" ... Southfield Chrysler is offering almost $4,000 off 2012 Chrysler 200 sedans... And Ford is offering almost $5,000 off some 2013 Taurus models... But industry insiders say none of this suggests a return to the full-scale incentive wars of years past that helped push Detroit's automakers into financial ruin...

- AUTOS RECALLS and CLAIMS -

* DC - NHTSA upgrades probe of trapped Ford gas pedals


(Photo: The Mercury Milan)
Washington,DC,USA -The Detroit News, by David Shepardson -December 15, 2012: -- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Friday it is upgrading its two-and-a-half-year-old investigation into Ford Motor Co. vehicles for pedal entrapment problems, and nearly doubling the number of vehicles covered to 480,000... NHTSA said it is upgrading its investigation to an engineering analysis, a move necessary before it can order an automaker to recall vehicles... The initial investigation began in May 2010 and covered 249,301 2010 model Ford Fusion and Mercury Milan cars. The upgraded investigation covers the 2008-10 Fusion, Milan and Lincoln MKZ... NHTSA said unsecured mats may interfere with the ability of the accelerator pedal to return to idle... The agency said a heel blocker in the floor pan provides a platform that may lift an unsecured mat into contact with the pedal. Ford introduced new pedals as a running change early in model-year 2010... The Dearborn automaker said in a statement Friday that it doesn't agree with the NHTSA's decision...


 * DC - Hyundai, Kia to accept mpg claims through '13 
Washington,DC,USA -The Detroit News, by David Shepardson -December 18, 2012: -- Hyundai Motor Corp. and Kia Motors will allow owners of vehicles with overstated gas mileage ratings until at least the end of 2013 to register for compensation, the automakers told a key U.S. senator... The Korean automakers — which are controlled by the same conglomerate — told Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W. Va., chairman of the Commerce Committee, in recent letters they will compensate dealers for taking part in the program and won't make owners waive their legal rights to participate... Last month, the automakers said they would reimburse owners of nearly 1.1 million vehicles in North America, including 900,000 vehicles in the United States, after admitting they overstated gas mileage claims on vehicle window stickers...


* DC - Toyota pays $17.35M for delaying recall

(Photo from Toyota: Delayed recalls cost Toyota $48.8 million in civil penalties in 2010) 
Washington,DC,USA -The Detroit News,by David Shepardson -December 18, 2012: -- Toyota Motor Corp. said today it will pay a record-setting $17.35 million U.S. fine for delaying the recall of 154,000 Lexus SUVs over pedal entrapment issues, and promises that it will make significant changes in how it responds to safety issues...   In a significant blow to the Japanese automaker, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it was imposing the largest fine in U.S. history for a single recall campaign over the June call-back of 154,000 2010 Lexus RX 350 and RX 450h vehicles...  It's the fourth time since 2010 that Toyota has paid the maximum allowable fine for delaying recalls. In 2010, Toyota paid $48.8 million in civil penalties for failing to recall millions of vehicles, in three separate campaigns, in a timely manner...  In a draft five-page agreement with the U.S. government obtained by The Detroit News, Toyota said it will restructure its organization to consolidate responsibility for quality assurance and review of safety-related issues in the United States. It did not admit any wrongdoing...

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2012-12-15

CARMAKERS NEWS * WORLDWIDE

* Russia - Renault-Nissan Secures Majority Control Of AvtoVAZ

  Moscow,Russia -YouTube -12 Dec 2012: -- The Renault–Nissan Alliance has finalised the details of a new joint venture with Russian Technologies that will secure majority control of AvtoVAZ, owner of the Lada brand...  The new venture, Alliance Rostec Auto BV, have been made to accelerate product launches and technology transfer to AVTOVAZ, Russia's largest carmaker: 
Renault-Nissan will invest about US$750 million, and Russian Technologies will favorably restructure debt as they form the joint venture. 
Renault-Nissan will get a majority stake in the joint venture, which will control AVTOVAZ; transaction is expected to be complete in 2014...


* Germany - Volkswagen Group lays foundation stone for new engine plant in Russia

(Photo: A Volkswagen Vento) Wolfsburg,Germany/Kaluga,Russia -VW (PR) -11 Dec 2012: -- Volkswagen Group is pressing ahead with Russian expansion plans, a sign of confidence in a market where sales have decidedly begun to slow... From 2015, the Group is to supply its vehicle assembly plant at Kaluga and contract production at the GAZ plant in Nizhny Novgorod with highly advanced engines produced locally... The new plant is designed for an annual capacity of 150,000 units. The engine to be produced at Kaluga in the future will be a 1.6-litre petrol engine from the EA 211 series, representing Volkswagen’s most modern engine technology. The start of production is scheduled for the beginning of 2015... For the Volkswagen Group, Russia is currently its sixth-largest individual market, after China, Germany, Brazil, the USA and Great Britain. In 2012, the Group will deliver more than 315,000 vehicles to Russian customers, corresponding to growth of 38% compared with the previous year. More than half of these vehicles already come from local production. In the long term, the Volkswagen Group plans to sell 500,000 vehicles per year in Russia by 2018...


* Brazil - Revolutionary ‘One-Kit’ Assembly Process At New Hyundai Brazil Plant Powered By Rolling Robots

Piracicaba,SP,Brazil -Automotive News (UK) -10 Dec 2012: ... One particular innovation at the Brazil plant and dig a little deeper, because it’s a great illustration of Hyundai’s new thinking. Our new plant in Piracicaba, Brazil – about 160 kilometers northwest of Sao Pauloemploys a new kind of parts-supply setup called a “one-kit” system... This factory is where our Brazilian Car Of the Year-winning HB20 is made...  Typically, on an automotive assembly line, the cars go by and workers attach parts, which they pull from stationary bins near their work station. This has worked pretty well for the past 100 years or so, but it also leads to parts redundancy – every parts station must have bolts or screws, for instance – and the process causes extra worker motion, since workers have to turn around and grab parts to put on the cars...  At Piracicaba, most of the parts for each individual vehicle – mainly the smaller parts, such as bolts and trim and small assemblies – are placed in “kits” that travel alongside the vehicle on a parallel line...


* China -  Zhejiang Geely And Volvo Cars Sign Tech Cooperation Agreements

(Photo: Zhejiang Geely unveils GLEagle GX7 SUV at Beijing Auto Show) 
Zhejiang,China -Whats on Ningbo -12 Dec 2012: -- Chinese carmaker Zhejiang Geely Holding has signed three technological cooperation agreements with Volvo Cars... The deals will allow Zhejiang to use some technologies Volvo plans to phase out in the next two years...  As per the deals, Zhejiang will use Volvo's mid-size vehicle platform or underpinning technology, interior air quality, and safety technology... The agreements are expected to improve Geely's vehicle engineering abilities and help the two firms reduce costs...


* Japan - Toyota To Postpone Tianjin Project
Toyota City,Aichi Prefecture,Japan -Automotive News, by David Isaiah -10 Dec 2012: -- Japanese vehicle manufacturer Toyota has reportedly decided to postpone construction of a new plant in Tianjin, China. The OEM is also believed to be considering delaying the construction of another new plant in Guangzhou. Toyota currently manufactures its vehicles at three facilities in China... 


* UK - Desert rovers JLR and Saudi Arabia



Whitley, Coventry, United Kingdom -The Economist, by P.C. -Dec 11, 2012: -- It has been a busy time for Jaguar Land Rover (JLR). In the past three months the British-based but Indian-owned luxury carmaker has launched the all-new Jaguar F-Type sports car, a radically redesigned Range Rover SUV (pictured) and the Jaguar XFR-S, a high-performance sedan. It has started work on a new assembly plant in China with its local partner, Chery. And now it has signed an agreement with Saudi Arabia to look into building factories there to make parts, and perhaps finished cars... Perhaps unsurprisingly, JLR’s plans to expand abroad have caused a bit of anxiety among workers at its British plants. But such worries should be assuaged by the company’s heavy investment and job creation both at its existing plants, in the West Midlands and Merseyside, and at a new engine factory that is now being built in Wolverhampton...


* India - Jeep To Enter India In 2013

Ranjangaon,Taluka/Shirur,Pune,India -Automotive News, by David Isaiah -7 Dec 2012: -- Fiat Group Automobiles India (FGAIPL) has announced a slew of vehicle launches for the Indian market, in a move aimed at strengthening its position in the country. Significantly, this strategy includes the official launch of the Jeep brand in India in 2013... 


 - CARS PART and ACCESORIES - 


* Russia - ContiTech Invests €13 Million In New Plant In  
 Kaluga,Russia -Automotive News -10 Dec 2012: -- ContiTech is investing some €13 million in a new plant for air-conditioning and power steering lines in the Russian city of Kaluga. Construction of the plant is expected to begin in February next year; the first series parts are scheduled for production in December 2013... With this move, ContiTech is therefore following its customer Renault-Nissan, which holds a majority stake in Russian automaker AvtoVaz... The manufacturing facility will be constructed on the 60-hectare site where a Continental tire plant is currently being set up. Both facilities will be able to share the existing infrastructure there...

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TRUCKING INDUSTRY NEWS * Australia

* NSW - ATA: Releases side underrun protection advisory

Sydney,NSW,Australia -ATA Friday facts -14 Dec 2012: -- The Australian Trucking Association has published a new technical advisory procedure providing general construction guidelines for heavy vehicle side underrun protection devices that comply with the UN ECE international standards for motor vehicles... Side underrun protection devices protect road users such as pedestrians and cyclists from slipping sideways under the wheels of trucks and trailers, and can also improve the aerodynamic performance of heavy vehicles... The advisory procedure provides designs and installation diagrams for the construction of steel, aluminium or fibre composite side under run protection devices compatible with most trailer designs... 


- RULES and REGULATIONS -

* ACT - Tax office issues road user charge refund determination 

(Photo)
Canberra,ACT,Australia -ATA Friday facts -14 Dec 2012: -- The tax office has issued a determination to make it simpler for refrigerated trailer and other operators to claim road user charge refunds following an Administrative Appeals Tribunal ruling in August... In the ruling, the tribunal found that the fuel used to operate trailer refrigeration units was not subject to the road user charge... The tribunal ruled that operators could claim 38.143 cents per litre in fuel tax credits on the fuel used in these units, instead of the 12.643 cents per litre that can currently be claimed on the fuel used to propel trucks and prime movers... The ruling will affect all operators that use fuel to run auxiliary equipment on their trucks, not only those with refrigerated trailers... 

* NSW - ATA: Calls for new emissions standard to be made optional 


Sydney,NSW,Australia -ATA Friday facts -14 Dec 2012: -- The existing ADR 80/03 emissions standard should be maintained and the proposed ADR 80/04 made optional, the ATA has said this week in its submission to the Department of Infrastructure and Transport... The submission is in response to the Departments review of Emission Standards for Heavy Vehicles Discussion paper, which is debating the merits of moving to the new Euro VI and equivalent standards...  

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2012-12-12

TRUCKERS & DRUGS * Australia

* Drug test blitz nabs 20 NSW truckies 

(Video from You Tube, by Rocketboy: The BIGGEST trucks in the world. A selection of clips from my road train and truck videos. Nothing here with less than three trailers.And yes I know there are bigger ones but not out on the highways. Oct 29, 2009) 
Sydney,NSW,USA -AAP/The Australian News -December 10, 2012: -- Twenty truck drivers have tested positive for drugs during a weekend operation on NSW roads, police say... None tested positive for alcohol... The operation was conducted at the Marulan Heavy Vehicle Inspection Station near Goulburn over the weekend... Operations Commander of the Traffic and Highway Patrol, Superintendent Stuart Smith, said police were disappointed by the results... The 20 truck drivers have been suspended from driving for 24 hours and will be issued with a court attendance notice and charged if the results are confirmed within a fortnight...

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TRUCKMAKERS NEWS * USA

* Pennsylvania - Mack vehicle lineup meets GHG14 regs

Macungie,PENN,USA -Fleet Owner -Dec. 12, 2012: -- Mack Trucks has announced that its full lineup of model-year 2014 trucks and tractors is certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration as meeting 2014 fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas (GHG) regulations... Under the GHG14 regulations, trucks and buses built in 2014 through 2018 are projected to reduce oil consumption by 530 million barrels and greenhouse gas emissions by 270 million metric tons... 


* DC - Volvo Trucks earn GHG14 certification


Washington,DC,USA -Fleet Owner -Dec. 12, 2012: -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has certified all 2014 model year Volvo Trucks vehicles as meeting greenhouse gas regulations for heavy trucks... In early 2011, Volvo introduced new advanced aerodynamic components for its VN highway models, including redesigned mirror heads with aerodynamic shrouds and arms, redesigned hood mirrors that also increase visibility, as well as additional ground effect features below the bumper and side fairings. A more aerodynamic roof fairing and sun visor were also added to the VN model daycabs, Volvo said... The EPA and NHTSA certifications apply to all configurations of Volvo VNL, VNM, VHD and Volvo Autohauler (VAH) models... Under the GHG14 regulations, trucks and buses built in 2014 through 2018 are projected to reduce oil consumption by 530 million barrels and greenhouse gas emissions by 270 million metric tons...


* Michigan - Ford to offer diesel engine option for new Transit


(Photo: Ford Motor Co's Transit van)
Dearborn,MICH,USA -Fleet Owner -Dec. 10, 2012: -- The new Transit full-size van Ford Motor Co. is planning to introduce late next year as the eventual replacement for its E-Series van is going to be offered with an option to the 3.2-liter Power Strokefive-cylinder diesel engine... The OEM said its 3.2-liter Power Stroke is currently manufactured in Ford’s Struandale Engine Plant in Port Elizabeth, South Africa and will be exported to its Kansas City Assembly Plant in Claycomo, MO, which received a $1.1 billion investment for building the new Transit van... The 3.2-liter Power Stroke is one of several engines that will be available for Transit in North America, including the OEM’s 3.5-liter EcoBoostgasoline engine. All engines are mated to a Ford 6R80 six-speed automatic transmission, Ford said...

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TRUCKMAKERS NEWS * WORLDWIDE

* The Netherlands - Iveco gas vans are natural choice for TNT Express

Hoofddorp,Netherlands -Transport Engineer -10 Dec 2012: -- Iveco and TNT Express have signed a contract for the delivery of 115 Daily natural powered vehicles by 2013 for TNT's Italian operations... The methane gas-powered vehicles will be used by TNT for its express courier activities in Rome and central Italy... The natural power Daily delivers the same performance, power and torque as its diesel counterpart, while providing for an estimated fuel cost reduction of 40%... The vehicle also cuts CO2 emissions by 5—8%, helping to reach the Euro 6 power legislation. And noise is also five decibels lower than the diesel version, which results in 75% less apparent noise. Also, a 'recovery mode' means the van can switch its power source to gas, allowing drivers to continue their journey should the methane run out... 


* Saudi Arabia - Isuzu to export trucks with logo 'made in ... ' 

Dammam,Saudi Arabia -MENAFN/Arab News -10 Dec 2012: --  The general director of the Saudi Industrial Property Authority (MODON), declared that "the Isuzu Motors factory in Dammam will launch its production this weekend". He said that the factory is considering exportation after covering the needs of the local market. He pointed out that the factory will encourage industrial investments related to the automotive industry while at the same time working accordingly to create investment opportunities in this field...   Al Rashid's statement came after the Industrial Cities Authority yesterday announced the production of the first light vehicle in cooperation with Isuzu Motors Ltd. It has signed an agreement with the company to allocate the first industrial project in the area on a land area of 120,000 square meters in Dammam Second Industrial City in order to set up an integrated auto and truck-manufacturing factory...


* China - Heavy truck sales continue to fall in November 

Shanghai,SH,USA -Gasgoo, by Carmen Lee -December 12, 2012:   ... According to a cvworld.cn report appearing today, a total of 44,500 heavy trucks were sold in November. Although the number represents slight growth of two percent from October, it is still a full 20.6 percent less than last November's reported figure. November marks the sixth consecutive month that Chinese truck sales have failed to exceed 50,000 units. The vast majority of manufacturers saw their truck sales fall over the month... Several in the industry doubt that total truck sales this year will exceed the 630,000 mark, failing to meet 2009's total sales figures. How the industry should tackle poor market conditions looks to be one of the key topics of debate at the upcoming International Commercial Vehicle Conference...

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BANKRUPTCY * USA

* DC - Bankruptcy court approves sale of A123 to Chinese corporation

Washington,DC,USA -The Detroit News, by David Shepardson -December 11, 2012: -- A U.S. bankruptcy court on Tuesday approved the sale of electric battery producer A123 to Chinese Wanxiang Group Corp for $256.6 million... The court also approved the sale of A123's Ann Arbor-based government business — including all U.S. military contracts to Navitas Systems for $2.25 million... The sale must still be approved by the Committee for Foreign Investment in the United States, known as CFIUS... In a recent letter to Treasury Secretary, Timothy Geithner — who chairs the Committee on Foreign Investment, which reviews the sale of U.S. companies, Sens. Carl Levin, D-Detroit, Debbie Stabenow, D-Lansing, and members of the House raised concerns about the sale, saying it "may pose a threat to national security...

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