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Should Tesla be worried about Volvo’s Polestar 2?

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Should Tesla be worried about Volvos Polestar 2

Volvo’s Polestar division is entering the EV sedan market and it has the Tesla Model 3 in its cross hairs. Should Tesla be concerned? Can the EV market bear another entrant? Does Polestar have what it takes to compete against the hip Tesla brand?

The short answer to all of these questions is, “Yes.”

Tesla should definitely be concerned, especially considering the early interest in the upcoming competitor. Polestar’s rapid rise ever since being purchased by Volvo has caught the attention of many electric vehicle enthusiasts who weren’t expecting a release so soon. The Polestar 1 made a minor splash but its with their all-electric follow up that the automotive world is abuzz.

The teasing image of the fastback tail of the new Polestar 2 has been shared widely across automotive news outlets, mostly for the lack of details on design. What we see is sleek, but more importantly it promises a slightly different but comparable feel as the Model 3. Unlike other competitors, it seems like Polestar isn’t shying away from going directly after Tesla. Whether they’ll be successful or not will depend on the reception it receives compared to the Tesla, but even a poor reception will cut into Tesla’s dominance.

“We are not saying it’s a Tesla killer, we are here to vividly compete with them in the market,” said CEO Thomas Ingenlath. “We will launch Polestar 2 in the second half of 2019 and production will begin around the start of 2020.”

Electric vehicle sales have been skyrocketing this year, making the timing of the Polestar 2 conspicuous. Did the rush it while the waters were hot or is it just convenient for them to be entering the market at a high point? Model 3 sales jumped from a little over 6,000 units in May and June to impressive spikes in July (14,250) and August (17,800). The trend continued until the December, 2018 explosion that saw 25,250 Model 3s leaving showrooms across North America.

The real question is the third one. Does Polestar have what it takes. Tesla has fought the odds to emerge as not only a hip but also a very successful option for those seeking fast, green, luxurious sedans. Polestar has been impressive with their engineering feats so far, which prompted Volvo to rush them into being a full-blown high-performance electric vehicle brand in 2017. The Polestar 2’s entry into the segment will precede the Polestar 3’s attempt to crack the small SUV market in 2022.

Polestar has one major advantage over Tesla. Even though the company is new to the mass production arena, it has the technology, infrastructure, and pre-developed parts that come with decades of Volvo existence.

The company reports its Tesla Model 3 competitor will be comparable in almost every way that counts, including price (likely between $40,000-$55,000), range (300 miles), and horsepower (400 hp). It will also be the first vehicle to include the Google Android HMI with their in-car version of Google Assistant.

The field will get crowded pretty quickly as multiple brands are moving in. The Volvo Polestar 2 gives every early indication it could be a real challenger for a growing market of electric sedan buyers. We’ll find out next year.

Automotive

Top 5 worst tractor attachments

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Top 5 worst tractor attachments

A tongue in cheek video from Messick’s that may stir up a bit of controversy.

Just for fun we present this recent video from Messick’s on the more frustrating tractor implements. The choices were based on a Facebook pointing out a few important issues with some and why they can be difficult to use.

For example, the down force issue with the three-point hitch post hole auger maybe something no one has considered. Please note that it’s the older three-point hitch variety that is backhoe being described, the more recent models have a subframe mount. Remember this isn’t our opinion on the matter – especially considering item #2.

Top 5 Worst Tractor Attachments
Messick’s
Premiered Jun 24, 2019

#5 Three point hitch snow blower
#4 Three point hitch post hole digger
#3 Three point hitch back hoe
#2 Three point quick hitches
#1 Drive over mower deck

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All new 2020 Ford Super Duty looks great, but does it have the specs?

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All new 2020 Ford Super Duty looks great but does it have the specs

Update: Commenter Wyatt offered this correction: An error in your post. The legendary 7.3L V8 engine is returning, but only in GAS. The diesel engine will still be the standard (yet upgraded) 6.7L Power Stroke Turbo Diesel. Performance numbers have yet to be released, but my thoughts for diesel are around 450-460 hp and around 940-950 lb.-ft. torque, and for gas engine will be around 450 hp and around 505-510 lb.-ft. torque.

Thank you, Wyatt!

Original Story:

When Ford Motor Company comes to mind, they want you to think of two things – trucks and SUVs. The brand is essentially abandoning anything shorter than a crossover, making it imperative that they get their trucks and sports utility vehicles exactly right. The all-new 2020 Super Duty F-250 and F-350 are coming out. Did they get them exactly right?

On the outside, they definitely did. These are arguably the most attractive big trucks every designed. Big without being too bulking. Sleek without being too wimpy. Bold without being too loud. The combination of tasteful and ominous seem to have blended perfectly in the new Super Duty.

All new 2020 Ford Super Duty looks great but does it have the specs

The question that every big truck lover is asking is whether or not this is going to deliver the power Ford owners have grown accustomed to over the decades. In short, yes. The aluminum body still presents them with the strength and light weight that most consider to be an advantage over other trucks in the segment. Combine that with the legendary 7.3L diesel turbo Powerstroke and it’s a winning mix that rides on a 10-speed automatic transmission.

The numbers for towing and hauling are not released, but experts expect it to be the top of the line ahead of Chevrolet and Dodge. As Alex on Autos notes, it’s very likely they’re holding back on the numbers because they’re so good.

What he didn’t care for as much as the Chevrolet is the interior. It’s a big pickup, but this isn’t the 1980s. Drivers aren’t expecting it to be a luxury interior, but they still want it to be more comfortable than the old farm haulers of the last century.

There’s no word on when they’ll be released, but expect Ford to time it out around the summer heavy duty season. Will this be the truck to put the rest to shame. Until we drive it, we won’t pass judgment but so far, so good.

 


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GM rebounds with $8.1B 2018 profit on strong pricing

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GM rebounds with 81B 2018 profit on strong pricing

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors posted an $8.1 billion net profit for 2018, fueled by better prices for vehicles sold in the U.S., its most lucrative market.

It’s a strong rebound from the previous year when the company lost $3.9 billion on a giant tax accounting charge.

GM made $10.8 billion before taxes in North America, down about 9 percent from 2017. But it still means big profit-sharing checks for about 46,500 union workers in the U.S. They’ll get $10,750 each, less than last year’s $11,500.

The company said Wednesday that it made $5.58 per share for the year. Without $2.5 billion worth of special items largely due to restructuring, the profit was $6.54, easily beating Wall Street expectations of $6.29, according to a survey by FactSet.

Full-year revenue rose 1 percent to $147.05 billion, also beating estimates of just over $145 billion.

GM made $2 billion, or $1.40 per share in the fourth quarter. Excluding restructuring charges, the company’s per-share earnings were $1.43, also breezing past Wall Street expectations of $1.24.

Shares of GM rose almost 3 percent at the opening bell.

Chief Financial Officer Dhivya Suryadevara said GM said it made $2 billion on its joint venture in China last quarter, despite slowing auto sales in the country.

The Trump administration’s tariffs on imported aluminum and steel raised prices of those commodities, costing the company more than $1 billion last year. Suryadevara expects another $1 billion increase this year.

“It’s a volatile environment as you well know, and we’re going to have to see how that goes,” she said.

GM has managed to offset some costs with efficiencies, she told reporters Wednesday.

Even with the profit, GM’s U.S. sales last year fell 1.6 percent as big SUVs and the company’s top-selling Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck faltered during the fourth quarter. But sales of many smaller SUVs rose and the average sale price of a GM vehicle hit a record of $36,974, the company said. GM’s U.S. market share 0.4 percentage points to 16.7 percent.

The profits are being announced as GM lays off about 4,300 white-collar workers, many of them at its giant technical center in a nearby suburb of Warren, Michigan. The company plans to close five U.S. and Canadian factories and eliminate a total of 14,000 salaried and blue-collar jobs as part of a giant restructuring to boost profit margins, prepare for a downturn and invest more in electric and autonomous vehicles.

GM wanted to cut 8,000 white-collar workers. About 2,200 took retirement offers, and the company let go of another 1,500. This week, GM started telling 4,300 other salaried workers that they were out of a job.

The company plans to eliminate about 6,000 factory worker jobs by closing three car assembly plants and two other factories. But it says there are 2,700 openings for U.S. workers at factories across the nation.

 


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