GM Adds Six-Speed Transmission
General Motors’ six-speed transmission is claimed to boost gas
mileage by up to 4 percent. GM will offer the six-speed in the 2006
Corvette, Cadillac STS-V and XLR-V, and in several models of GM’s 2007
full-size SUVs, which are popular with trailerists.
GM Recalling Vans
General Motors is recalling approximately 425,000 vans from the
2003 to 2006 model years for defective seatbelts. The Chevrolet Express
and GMC Savana vans are involved in the recall. In the affected models,
seatbelt buckles may not latch or unlatch properly. No injuries have
been tied to the problem, which will be repaired for free.
NHTSA Initiates Probe of GM Pickups
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has
opened an investigation of brakelight failures on General Motors’ pickup
trucks. NHTSA has received reports of brakelight switches failing,
resulting in brakelights not working on some 2005 Chevrolet Colorado and
the GMC Canyon pickups. No accidents or injuries have been reported as a
result of the problem. As many as 160,000 vehicles may be affected.
Talking and Driving Increasing
NHTSA reports that the number of drivers talking on cellular
telephones is now 10 percent, that’s up from 8 percent in 2004. NHTSA
reports that women and young drivers are more likely to be talking on
the phone while driving than other age and gender groups. Three states
(Connecticut, New York and New Jersey, and the District of Columbia)
currently prohibit cell-phone use while driving.
Silver Is Still King
Silver remains far and away the most popular color for car buyers
around the world, accounting for nearly one in four passenger cars,
trucks and crossover vehicles sold during the last year. According to
the latest color popularity survey by DuPont Automotive systems, white,
gray, blue, and black round out the Top Five list.