Drive Type: 4x4
Newburgh, Indiana, United States
Toyota, Honda, Mazda, Nissan, Subaru, Mitsubishi, Suzuki and Daihatsu have announced an alliance that will see a push to improve fuel economy from both gas-powered and diesel-powered engines by as much as 30 percent before the end of the decade.
The newly assembled Research Association of Automotive Internal Combustion Engines put the roughly $20-million project together, with the Japanese government committing to half the cost while the eight manufacturers will chip in the rest.
According to Automotive News, the automakers will team up and share basic research on internal-combustion engines in a bid to cut costs. Eventually, the results of the research will find its way into a production vehicle, although it's unclear just when we'll see the fruits of this partnership on the road.
Plenty of us here at Autoblog have designs for epic drives. Whether it's bouncing around the country in an old International or heading from Alaska to Chile on a bike, we like to think we have big aspirations. Or at least we did until we heard about these four gentlemen. You see, Leslie George Carvall, Alan Butler, Glyn Maher and Charles Scott are all in their 70's, and they plan to pile into a pair of Suzuki Jimny SUVs and drive around the world. Sort of makes a hike across country seem like a trip down the block to the local corner store. They're calling it "The Ultimate Challenge," and they plan to undertake the journey for two reasons.
First, they want to prove that age shouldn't stand in the way of people doing what they want to do. Second, the group hopes to raise funds for the 'Heaven Can Wait I'm Busy' group, which aims to direct money toward worthy charities both in the UK and around the world. Save the Children and Oakhaven Hospice are the two currently designated charities.
The trip gets started in just three days, and you can head over to the effort's site to track their progress. The route should cover some 16,500 road miles and 10,375 sea miles. You can also catch up with the project on Facebook.
It's pretty much a done-deal now, folks. A US bankruptcy judge has approved Suzuki's plans to wind down its operations in the States. As part of Suzuki's Chapter 11 proceedings, its automotive unit will cease to exist in the US, leaving the motorcycle, ATV and marine units to function as Suzuki Motor of America.
It's not clear how many vehicles are left on the 219 remaining Suzuki dealership lots - the company reported sales of 1,764 in February - but the automaker has assured customers that warranty service and parts will remain available. Suzuki made an investment of $45 million to ensure its past and current customers aren't completely left in repair-work limbo.
Check out the complete announcement from Suzuki below for more information, and please join us in mourning the loss of the Kizashi sedan and SX4 hatch, two vehicles we are legitimately going to miss when this whole sordid affair is done and over with.