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Luxury and large cars claim China auto show spotlight

Factfile on new and concept cars at the Beijing auto show, which opened to the public Monday and spotlighted sport utility vehicles (SUVs), luxury cars and large sedans: SPORT UTILITY VEHICLES - Mercedes-Benz of Germany's Daimler presented a Coupe SUV concept, aimed at competing with BMW's X6, which was the first to combine the utility of an SUV and the attractiveness of a coupe, with great success.

Global automakers unveil China-focused models at Beijing auto show as China's influence grows

BEIJING, China - Ford Motor Co. on Sunday unveiled a new Escort sedan designed in China for global sale at a Beijing auto show that highlighted the growing influence of Chinese tastes on the industry. Automakers are looking to China's biggest auto show this year to help boost sales in this huge but cooling market. Total sales last year reached 17.9 million vehicles, but growth is expected to slow from 15.7 per cent to as low as 8 per cent, even as newcomers including Lincoln and Tesla enter the market.

Automakers look to Beijing show to boost sales in slowing, crowded market

BEIJING, China - Global and Chinese automakers are looking to the Beijing auto show to help boost sales in a slowing, intensely competitive market. Brands from General Motors Co. to Chinese SUV maker Great Wall Motors are unveiling new and restyled sedans, sport utility vehicles and other models at Auto China 2014 this week.

Mazda recalling 109,000 older Tribute SUVs to fix frame rust problem

DETROIT - Mazda is recalling 109,000 Tribute SUVs in cold-weather states to fix rusting frame parts. The recall covers SUVs from the 2001 through 2004 model years. Mazda says in documents filed with U.S. safety regulators that the frame can rust and a wheel control arm can separate from it. That could result in a loss of steering control. The SUVs were originally sold or registered in 20 states and Washington, D.C., where salt is used to clear snow and ice from roads.

Ford's Lincoln will debut in China this year, joining the high end market with custom features

BEIJING, China - Ford Motor Co. said Thursday it will sell high-end Lincoln cars in China for the first time later this year when it opens eight dealerships in seven cities. Lincoln is a late comer to China's luxury car market, but Robert Parker, president of Lincoln China, said the brand is being introduced here after thorough research. At Lincoln dealerships, Chinese customers will be greeted with a waterfall, considered auspicious, and their new Lincoln car will have a custom fragrance pleasing to Chinese noses, Parker said.

SUVs, MPVs account for 37.5 pct of all S. Korean car exports in Q1

SEOUL, April 10 (Yonhap) -- Sport utility vehicles (SUVs) and multi-purpose vehicles (MPVs) accounted for 37.5 percent of all South Korean car exports in the first quarter of this year, making them the second-largest vehicle types shipped out by the country, a local automotive industry association said Thursday. According to the Korea Automobile Manufacturers Association (KAMA), carmakers such as Hyundai Motor Co., Kia Motors Corp. and GM Korea Co. exported 282,848s SUVs and MPVs in the January-March period.

US auto sales picked up steam in March; Chrysler, Toyota, GM and Ford saw gains

DETROIT - U.S. auto sales went out like a lion in March. Automakers said Tuesday that new car and truck sales picked up speed halfway through the month, culminating in a strong final weekend. Toyota dealers had their two best sales weekends of the year at the end of the month, the company said. "We're optimistic that momentum will spring us into April," said Bill Fay, who manages the Toyota division in the U.S.

Light vehicle sales flat in March amid increase in truck sales and drop in cars

TORONTO - Light vehicle sales were flat for automakers overall in March, as an increase in light truck sales in Canada was offset by a drop in passenger cars. Total light vehicle sales for March amounted to 157,060, up from 156,680 in the year-ago period — an increase of 0.2 per cent, according to figures compiled by DesRosiers Automotive Consultants Inc. on Tuesday. Car sales fell 5.7 per cent to 66,209 in March from 70,205 sold in the same period last year, while truck sales were up 5.1 per cent to 90,851 from 86,475.

Nissan recalls 60,000 cars, SUVs, vans in Canada to fix air bag software

DETROIT - Nissan is recalling about 60,000 cars, SUVs and minivans in Canada because the front passenger air bags may not inflate in a crash. The announcement is part of a broader recall of just over 1 million cars, SUVs and minivans across North America by the automaker. It's the company's second recall to fix the same problem. The recall affects the Altima midsize car, Leaf electric car, Pathfinder SUV and Sentra compact models from the 2013 and 2014 model years, as well as the NV200 Taxi van and Infiniti JX35 SUV from 2013.

Woman gets 21 years in prison for leading NJ, NY carjacking ring

By David Jones NEWARK, New Jersey (Reuters) - A New York woman was sentenced on Friday to more than 21 years in prison for leading a carjacking ring that stole luxury cars valued at more than $2.5 million to sell in West Africa, according to federal prosecutors. In U.S. District Court in Camden, New Jersey, Judge Robert Kugler sentenced Hope "The Lady" Kantete, 44, to 262 months, U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman said in a statement.
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