Mazda awards young driver with an MX-5 and racing career

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Andrew Caddell celebrates winning the 2006 SCCA National Championship Runoff

You've got to hand it to Mazda. They want to be Zoom Zoom and they poney up the products and the marketing to back it up. Back in October we told you about Mazda's unique sponsorship of the SCCA, where they ran a contest for Mazda drivers in the amateur series. To be eligible to win, drivers had to win of one of the National Championships at the 2006 SCCA Runoffs. The winner gets a MX-5 with a ton of modifications, plenty of MazdaSpeed parts, and the money and tires to race in the 2007 SCCA Pro Racing SIRIUS Satellite Radio Mazda MX-5 Cup.

After three days of racing, four of the top 25 drivers were in Mazdas and were eligible to win the prizes, which amount to about $50,000 and a chance of a lifetime to race with the pros. 18-year-old Andrew Caddell came in first in the competition by being near perfect in 10 of the 11 on and off track challenges. Needless to say, Andrew is pretty psyched about his spoils, and he can't wait to get to Houston for his first professional race.

[Source: Mazda]


[via] Autoblog

POLL RESULTS: What you think of Car and Driver's redesign... eek, not good

What we're hearing from the masses is that of those who participated in our totally unscientific poll, the vast majority either hate Car and Driver's new redesign or couldn't even tell the book had been redesigned anyway. Sounds like Mission Accomplished, if you ask us. There are a few peeps that do like the new design, about 12%, but considering that Car and Driver paid "big bucks" for this, we imagine they were hoping like 88% of people would love it, instead.

We wonder what this means for the biggest car magazine in the world. Is that title in jeapordy now (or more so than it was before) and If subscriptions are falling, how fast? A few readers noticed they began giving subscriptions away today, which means if you're too cheap to pay $12, $10 or even $3.99 for a year's subscription, perhaps the magazine would be worth paying nothing for. That's 100% off the cover price! The free subscriptions were spotted on (great site!) and hosted through, but their inventory has already been depleted, so don't bother filling out your info and the questionnaire.


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BOLD MOVES: THE FUTURE OF FORD A new documentary series. Be part of the transformation as it happens in real-time

[via] Autoblog

AutoblogGreen for 02.02.07

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As you can see, there are three parts to the image montage above. Please match up the following news clues with the post on AutoblogGreen (hint, the $39.5 billion profit story does not go with Ford Motor Company and their new Edge HySeries prototype).

News items:
  1. $39.5 billion in profit in 2006
  2. HySeries drivetrain technology explained
  3. zero-emission downhill racers (helmet required)
To see the answers, click on a link below, and thanks for playing.


[via] Autoblog

By the Numbers: January 2007

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Ford and General Motors see sales fall sharply in January, Toyota continues growth, Mitsubishi makes a comeback

The numbers for January look worse than they actually are. Both Ford an General Motors saw sales fall around 20% compared to last year, but the drop is the result of a planned reduction in sales to fleet companies by both automakers, which will in turn improve the resale value of their vehicles reaching showrooms this year. The Chrysler Group managed to minimize the damage this month, thanks in large part to the performance of its Jeep brand that was up 14% this month. Some analysts and journalists are making noise that Ford fell to fourth place in sales this month behind GM, Toyota and the Chrysler Group. This is only true if sales of the Premier Automotive Group are not counted along with Ford, L incoln and Mercury sales, something that was never done before this month when it seems convenient to make a sensational headline.

As usual, Toyota was up almost 5% this month and earned the title of Nation's Best-Selling Brand thanks to Ford and Chevy giving up all those fleet sales. Both of Nissan's brands had a good month, propelling Nissan North America up almost 5%. Finally, we have to give Suzuki credit for carrying its momentum into the new year with sales up 9% and Mitsubishi, a company we all thought was on life support in the U.S. but came out of January kicking with sales up nearly 21%.

Biggest Winner
Mercedes-Benz 31.4% at 17,069 (1/06: 12,469)

Biggest Loser
Pontiac -38.5% at 24,060 (1/06: 37,545)

Acura -10.6% at 13,017 (1/06: 13,981)
Audi .97% at 6,399 (1/06: 6,084)
BMW -1.8% at 19,761 (1/06: 19,274)
Buick -32.8% at 12,013 (1/06: 17,173)
Cadillac -10.5% at 13,740 (1/06: 14,733)
Chevrolet -17.9% at 148,488 (1/06: 173,622)
Chrysler -18% at 41,486 (1/06: 48,628)
Dodge -1% at 79,461 (1/06: 77,064)
Ford -25.2% at 132,006 (1/06: 169,412)
GMC -2.3% at 28,488 (1/06: 27,978)
Honda -.17% at 87,773 (1/06: 84,413)
HUMMER -26.7% at 3,980 (1/06: 5,214)
Hyundai -11.9% at 27,721 (1/06: 30,208)
Infiniti 6.8% at 8,964 (1/06: 8,058)
Isuzu 1.5% at 667 (1/06: 631)
Jaguar -16.4% at 1,390 (1/06: 1,596)
Jeep 14% at 35,361 (1/06: 29,773)
Kia 19.4% at 22,524 (1/06: 18,110)
Land Rover -10.8% at 3,433 (1/06: 3,693)
Lexus 8% at 22,118 (1/06: 19,658)
Linc oln 1.4% at 9,594 (1/06: 9,345)
Mazda 1.7% at 19,265 (1/06: 18,177)
Mercedes-Benz 31.4% at 17,069 (1/06: 12,469)
Mercury -5.3% at 12,604 (1/06: 12,781)
MINI -33% at 2,050 (1/06: 2,944)
Mitsubishi 20.7% at 9,383 (1/06: 7,463)
Nissan 4.3% at 73,680 (1/06: 67,834)
Pontiac -38.5% at 24,060 (1/06: 37,545)
Porsche -10.7% at 3,103 (1/06: 3,337)
Saab 3.3% at 2,362 (1/06: 2,196)
Saturn -22.2% at 13,705 (1/06: 16,907)
Subaru -6.4% at 12,074 (1/06: 12,384)
Suzuki 8.9% at 8,179 (1/06: 7,210)
Toyota 4.7% at 153,732 (1/06: 140,967)
Volkswagen -1.8% at 16,610 (1/06: 16,237)
Volvo -15.2% at 7,808 (1/06: 8,844)

BMW Group -5.8% at 21,811 (1/06: 22,218)
Chrysler Group -3.5% at 156,308 (1/06: 155,465)
Ford Motor Co -22.1% at 166,835 (1/06: 205,671)
General Motors -19.7% at 247,464 (1/06: 296,003)
Honda America -1.7% at 100,790 (1/06: 98,394)
Nissan North America 4.5% at 82,644 (1/06: 75,891)
Toyota Motor Co. 5.1% at 175,850 (1/06: 160,625)

Note: All percentages represent the chance in the Daily Average Sales rate on account of there being 25 selling days in January 2007 compared with 24 in January 2006. Thus, the percentage is obtained by dividing the number of sales in each month with the number of available selling days that month, and calculating the difference between the two as a percentage.


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BOLD MOVES: THE FUTURE OF FORD A new documentary series. Be part of the transformation as it happens in real-time

[via] Autoblog