Here are the car news stories you might have missed this week.
Another week of crazy events has come to a close, and I’m not talking about Chinese spy balloons or UFOs. In the auto industry everything seems to be in flux right now as the economy is looking shaky, the electrification push continues but not without problems, and two big recall waves have hit.
It’s like driving with a claymore in front of you.
Nissan is recalling over 463,000 2008-2011 Xterras, Pathfinders, Titans, Armadas, and Frontiers as well as 2008-2009 Quests because the steering wheel emblem can come loose if the airbag underneath deploys. We can’t imagine having that plastic disc rocketing at bullet speeds towards a driver. So far there reportedly are four injuries attributed to the emblems.
Read more here.
Another push for unions in Tesla.
American automaker Tesla has so far dodged a bullet with workers joining unions, but it like many foreign automakers operating in this country is still a target. The latest push is for Tesla workers in New York to unionize.
Find out more here.
$100 for an electric Ram.
Ram is accepting reservations for its REV all-electric pickup truck and all it takes is $100. That’s incredibly low for a vehicle reservation, leading me to question if Ram doesn’t feel demand will be strong otherwise? Automakers love to brag about preorders, even though they don’t always translate into sales.
There aren’t enough minerals in the entire world.
A new geological study has confirmed what many have argued for a while now: there simply aren’t enough minerals, including copper, to have so-called green energy solutions completely take over for fossil fuels. In other words, mandating EVs, windmills, solar panels, etc. doesn’t change the reality that we don’t have the materials to make enough for everyone.
Read more about the study here.
Driving ‘til the wheels come off?
It used to be people would talk about keeping their car “until the wheels fall off” but if you have certain Subaru Solterras in your possession, that might happen sooner than expected. The Japanese automaker is recalled over 1,000 of the EVs after it was discovered “improperly tightened hub bolts” on some 2023 models can cause this brown code moment.
Read the details here.
America first car charger rules now set.
It was finalized by the US Department of Transportation this week that any electric vehicle charger funded through the US federal government must be assembled domestically. In addition, iron or steel charger enclosures must be made in this country and by 2024 at least 55% of the cost of all components in the chargers need to be built in the US. Just like the EV tax subsidy rules favoring US-built models, this will likely anger foreign manufacturers.