Articles

The Motorcycle Industry Is Dying

It’s also the manufacturing equivalent of a mid-life crisis. Motorcycle sales in the U.S. peaked in 2006 at 716,268 and promptly started to skid. When the recession hit, the market went down hard. Bike sales fell by 41 percent in 2009 and another 14 percent the following year, according to the Motorcycle Industry Council. That’s not surprising considering the economy at the time: A motorcycle is a picture of discretionary spending, and they can be tricky to finance even in a healthy credit market. Even now, with the stock market on a historic bull run and after the U.S. auto industry posted its best year on record, traffic in motorcycle stores has stayed slow. In 2016, U.S. customers rolled off with 371,403 new bikes, roughly half as many as a decade ago.

Driverless tech will make vehicles safer—and more comfortable

At Volvo’s design studio in Gothenburg, the boards where they post inspiring ideas used to be covered in cars. Now they’re covered in houses, boats and gadgets. “It’s the most exciting period in the history of car design,” says Robin Page, Volvo’s chief interior designer. “A new world is being opened up.” The reason? Cars that drive themselves.

Ford, UAW in talks to revive Ranger sales, output in U.S.

Ford Motor Co. is in discussions with the UAW about bringing the Ranger midsize pickup back to the U.S. market, a person with knowledge of the talks said late Tuesday.

The company is considering a plan to build the truck at Michigan Assembly Plant near Detroit after production of the Focus and C-Max ends in 2018, the source said.

New car technologies often unused by drivers, J.D. Power finds

A new study from J.D. Power suggests that automakers are investing billions into technologies that a considerable number of drivers aren’t using.

J.D. Power’s first 2015 Driver Interactive Vehicle Experience Report found that at least 20 percent of new-vehicle owners have never used 16 of the 33 technology features measured.