August 25th, 2011
Automover News: Mazda has stopped the production of its RX-8 rotary engine sports car, citing falling sales and stringent global emissions standards. Production in Hiroshima, Japan, ended in early July and global sales of the car will conclude later this year. The RX-8 and the three generations of the RX-7 that preceded it have long been the foundation the brand’s fun-to-drive aura. The car’s high-revving 1.3-liter, twin-rotor rotary engine produces 232 hp at 8,500 rpm a big punch in a relatively small package.
But Mazda sold just 1,134 RX-8s last year, a 49 percent decline from 2009. Sales through July of 2011 were down another 21 percent. The RX-8, which has a base price of $27,590, including shipping, peaked at 23,690 sales in 2004. But the first-generation RX-7 surpassed 50,000 units throughout the early 1980s. Mazda’s U.S. dealers had 300 units in stock as of Aug. 1 for a 118-day supply, according to the Automotive News Data Center.
Mazda pulled the RX-8 from the European market last year after the car failed to meet local emissions standards. Without volume from Europe, Mazda couldn’t justify selling the RX-8. Exporting vehicles from Japan also has become more difficult. This isn’t the first time that Mazda has dropped its rotary engine sports car from the U.S. lineup. The RX-7 was pulled after the 1995 model year. A rotary-powered car didn’t return to American showrooms until the 2003 introduction of the RX-8.
And the RX-8′s demise may not be the end of the rotary engine at Mazda. A source says engineers in Hiroshima are still working on the next generation, 1.6-liter rotary engine, code-named 16X, that is said to have lower emissions, better fuel economy and more power. When unveiled at the 2007 Tokyo Motor Show, the 16X had an enlarged elliptical shape for the combustion chamber and an enlarged eccentric center stroke in the rotor. Mazda also planned direct-injection fuel delivery in a rotary engine for the first time.
August 18th, 2011
Automover News: Container shipping companies create figures which can best be described as OK and at worst gloomy the biggest boy in the gang, freight carrier Maersk Line remains somewhat sheltered by its presence within the AP Moller Maersk Empire which issued half year figures today, profits depending heavily on the group’s oil related revenues. Although TEU volumes were up 6% the average freight rates, including bunker surcharges, were 3% lower than in the same period last year.
Actual container tally came out at 3.8 million forty foot equivalent units (FFE) producing a profit of $0.4 billion compared to last year’s equivalent of $1.2 billion. For the group overall revenue increased by 9% to $29.9bn primarily due to higher oil prices and container volumes. Profit for the period was 8% higher at $2.7bn positively affected by divestment gain from sale of Netto Food stores Ltd. UK of $ 0.7bn. The group annualised returns on invested capital after tax (ROIC) remained steady at 12.8%.
Tankers, offshore and other shipping activities made a profit of $250million up from $171 million. The big earner for Maersk was in oil and gas activities with profits of $1.2 billion against last year’s equivalent period which showed a $0.9 billion, showing an ROIC figure of 54.7%. Maersk continue to be the world’s number one container carrier with a total fleet of 621 such vessels of which 376 are chartered.
The official company outlook will be of interest to freight professionals with the group expecting only modest container profits for the foreseeable future. Despite feeling that global demand for seaborne containers will grow by 6-8% in 2011 the global supply of new tonnage is expected to grow more than the freight volumes especially on the Asia to Europe trade. This rebalancing will doubtless lead to freight rates remaining under pressure with high bunker and time charter costs expected to continue to exert a negative impact on profit margins.
August 11th, 2011
Auto mover News: Now a day’s more people like cars to drive and Toyoto introduces new models of the car every year. In 2012 Toyota Yaris, Sequoia, Tundra and Sienna get price hikes for the new model year.
Toyota announced today that the new Yaris model the Second-Smallest car in its U.S. lineup, will start at $14,115 for the two-door hatchback, excluding a $760 destination fee. That’s about $1,000 more than the 2011 model. $14,875 will get you a 2012 Toyota Yaris L three-door hatchback with a five-speed manual transmission. For The top of the line Yaris SE five-door hatch Yaris you will have to pay $17,960.
The new pricing places the Yaris above most of its competition. The Honda Fit starts at $15,100, the new Nissan Versa hatchback just hitting dealerships has a base MSRP of $14,380, and the Hyundai Accent begins at $14,595 for the base GS hatchback.
Toyota said the carry-over 2012 Sienna minivan will start at $25,330 for a new base 2WD cargo van with a V6 engine, including an $810 shipping charge. Pricing on the base 2012 Toyota Sienna with a four-cylinder engine remains the same at $25,870, including shipping. Entry into the Sequoia range starts at $40,930 for the 4×2 SR5 with a 4.6-liter V8, and ends at $61,805 with the 4×4 Platinum grade equipped with the 5.7-liter V8, reflecting an increase of $239. Prices for the 2012 Sequoia will go into effect beginning with its start of production on August 29.
August 4th, 2011
Automover News: Honda Australia announced its June retail sales results for private buyers. The Honda CR-V leading the SUV Compact category and Odyssey, leading the People Movers Under $55k category; Honda ranked second in the Light Model Under $25k segment with the Jazz and achieved total car sales for the month of 4,162 units.
Committed to offering our customers engineering excellence and worry-free motoring with an excellent value for money proposition and a fun driving experience, we are delighted that consumers are embracing Honda in this country. Our business strategy was to add value for our customers by delivering products with better specifications and adjustments to price. The Honda CR-V proved its promise as Australia’s best SUV Compact, stealing pole position in the category by selling 675 units and gaining a 10.27 per cent market share.
Taking out the top spot in the People Movers Under $55k category and achieving an outstanding market share of 33.23 per cent, Honda’s Odyssey achieved fantastic results in June, with 104 units of the popular car sold. The Jazz was the top performing car for Honda, selling 1,074 cars in June 2011 and achieving a 12.7 per cent market share in the Light Model Under $25k segment, ranking number two overall in the category.
With a history of delivering more from less and an exceptional driving experience that comes with a great value price tag, there has never been a better time to buy a Honda. The biggest engine manufacturer, a leader in automotive research and development and consistently rated a top performer in customer satisfaction, Honda has millions of delighted customers worldwide and more than 400,000 cars on the road in Australia.