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  • Toyota Recalls Yaris and Tacoma

    Toyota Motor Corp has recalled approximately 230 Yaris hatchbacks and 20 Tacoma TRD pro models. The latest 2015 model of the cars were also recalls. According to the car manufacturer, defects in the rear axle-bearing bolts were the major reason behind the recall.

     

    These bearing bolts were not tightened and can fall during operation. The components on the rear brake were damaged and the performance of your brakes will be affected. Furthermore, it can also result in a wheel lockup, and possibly cause a collision.

     

    On the other hand, the 2015 Tacoma TRD Pro models were recalled due to incorrect B pillar tire placement. This model was distributed in Puerto Rico with no properly inflated rear and front tires. The size of the tire and inflation pressure of a cold tire did not meet satisfactory levels, in both the front and rear tires, possibly leading to accidents. Both faults are caused due to problems in the assembly line, and because they failed to tighten the bolts and fit the properly inflated tires.

     

    Toyota further added that they are unaware of any accidents, injuries and deaths caused due by these faults in both the Yaris and Tacoma. Authorized Toyota dealers will repair vehicles without charging their customers.

     

    The owners of these vehicles will also receive a first class mail from Toyota about the issue. Owners who have received notices from Toyota should contact an authorized dealer as soon as possible to get their vehicles fixed. Used car shoppers should also keep an eye on any outstanding recalls on vehicles they plan to buy.

     

    Unfortunately, it is still unclear when the recall will officially begin. Customers can contact Toyota on its helpline or visit the website for further details. Toyota also recalled more than 50,000 vehicles from around the world during the second half of last year due to airbag issues. This trend of recalling vehicles is on the rise and the number of vehicles recalled every year run in millions. In fact, around 20 million vehicles have been recalled worldwide since 2008.

     

    Toyota is ranked among the top 3 car manufacturers when it comes to recalls. This is an alarming number for car manufacturers as they have to bear hefty fines due to these recalls. The good thing is that car manufacturers acknowledge car flaws and try to solve them as quickly as they can. This also indicates that most the car manufacturers are becoming increasingly serious about customer safety.

  • Working Towards Privacy between Connected Cars

    In this world of connectivity, an increasing number of cars are connecting to the internet. Although, this adds convenience on for customers, you cannot neglect the privacy factor. Connected cars have 40 components that are connected to a network. The safety and privacy of the car depends on the safety and privacy of these components.

     

    Due to a lack of proper security measures, connected cars have become a soft target for hackers. What steps are car manufacturers taking to assure full protection against any security attack? According to several reports, automakers are working towards protecting connected car customers from security attacks.

     

    In a few days, the International Association of Privacy Professionals is expected to devise a strategy to counter against security and privacy issues of the day. One topic that comes under discussion will be privacy and security between connected cars.

     

    According to estimates, the connected cars service industry will grow exponentially in the coming years. This makes it even more important to have a foolproof security system in place to protect from security breaches.

     

    Car Makers Agreement

    Last year, many manufacturers agreed on the connected car security and privacy principles covering different aspects of information collection and usage. This has made it mandatory for service providers to notify customers before using their information, clearly telling them how they will use your information. Additionally, car manufacturers were required to put up notices on their websites.

     

    Before collecting and using user information, service providers will be forced to ask for permission from the user, especially when it comes to sharing information with third parties. Companies collecting information must have a proper mechanism to insure protection from data loss and unauthorized access or use. The information should only be collected for business purposes and should not be retained after the purpose is achieved.

     

    These principles make both car manufacturers and network carriers bound to ensure top-notch protection against security attacks on privacy. The key is to implement these principles as they are and make sure other car manufacturers comply with these principles too. This way, owners of connected cars will be happier knowing their privacy is safe. It will also lead to a reduction in security and privacy breaches.

     

    Automakers understand they have to earn their customer’s trust to make their “connected” ventures successful. They cannot introduce new technologies in connected cars without convincing their customers it is safe and their privacy is secured. Automakers, regulators, policymakers and customers need to be on the same page when it comes to security and car manufacturers are working towards doing just that. They are taking collective measures to solve the security and privacy issues surrounding connected car.

  • Apple Working on Self Driving Car

    Tech giants have started to show more interest in self-driving cars lately. For example, Google has already experimented with self-driving cars. The latest entrant in this domain is none other than Apple. They are venturing out of mobile devices and experimenting with self-driving cars. If tech giants can put their act together in creating the best self-driving cars, then it would give some sleepless nights to car manufacturers such as Ford, Fiat and General Motors. Continue reading

  • All You Need to Know About Wheel Hub and Wheel Bearings

    Car parts play an important role in ensuring smoother functioning of your car. Wheel bearing and wheel hubs connects your car’s steering with its wheels and make travel possible. If you hear a noise when you are steering, it might be due to a damaged wheel bearing. Get it fixed as soon as possible.

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  • Ford Invests Billions in Spain

    The auto industry in Spain received a huge boost as the American carmaker, Ford, has decided to expand its operations in the country. The significant aspect of this news is that the automaker will be investing €2.3 billion, which is, by far, the biggest investment made in Spain’s car industry. Ford invested the first part of the amount, around €1.1 billion, in 2011, and a further €1.2 billion has been invested since.

     

    Over the past few years, most of the leading carmakers in the world have been setting up or expanding their operations in the southern part of Europe. Following the recession, the average wage level in the region has gone down. At the same time, Ford has also been scaling down its operations to cut out loss-making endeavors, such as shutting down their facility in Belgium.

     

    Spain has become an attractive destination for carmakers as the wage levels there remain low. Moreover, the relevant authorities have been focused on attracting brands from across the world to set up shop there which enables them to export their products easily. Around 80% of the manufacturing output from Ford’s plant will be exported. This puts Spain in a similar position as Mexico, where the auto industry is booming ad most of the vehicles sold in North and Central America are manufactured there.

     

    The Ford plant is located in Valencia, where the country’s Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy, paid a visit recently. The PM said that Ford has been playing an active role in helping the local economy recover by providing job opportunities. This is also the reason why the European Commission expects the Spanish economy to grow at a faster pace than it has been doing since the recession.

     

    According to Ford, the expanded plant will have the capacity to produce close to half a million vehicles in a year. This means that it will be the second-largest such facility around the world on the Ford network, with the largest being their factory located in Chongqing, China. Moreover, Ford will now be able to set up six model lines, increasing from the four it has currently. Also, the company will expand its export operations and target countries outside Europe. This includes shipping their Transit Connect compact vans to the US.

     

    At present, Ford has 8,000 employees on its payroll and has been a significant contributor to the 25,000+ jobs created by the auto industry in Spain over the past year.

  • Germany Wants Driverless Cars Soon

    Driverless cars are all the rage as far as the auto industry is concerned. Well, it goes without saying that it will be some before the first prototypes hit the road but that doesn’t mean people will stop speculating about them. It seems the first step towards turning that vision into reality has been taken by Germany. There are strong rumors that Google is working on driverless cars and will have them ready for use in the near future but they are yet to be passed into legislation. It appears as though the Germans are excited at the prospect of getting around without having to steer the vehicle.

     

    According the Ministry of Transport, the Minister is working on legal guidelines which will apply to using driverless cars. Initially, citizens will only be allowed to travel driverless on the autobahns. Alexander Dobrindt, the Minister of Transport, said that the government anticipated that driverless would be a prominent feature on the country’s roads in the next few years and hence they were being proactive by laying down the legislation to govern their use.

     

    Mr. Dobrindt has put together a committee of experts to work on the guidelines. The committee features individuals from different areas, including politics and research as well as from the auto industry. The committee is likely to propose a legal framework for the use of driverless car by September this year, which will coincide with the Frankfurt Car Fair.

     

    The current legislation prohibits the use of self-driving vehicles altogether. Based on the laws laid down in the 1968 Vienna Convention regarding road traffic, cars have to be operated by humans only. Germany is a signatory of the Convention as are 72 other countries. As expected, there are some key legal issues which will come up for debate, including determining liability in case of an accident and the process of licensing vehicles which will be self-driven.

     

    The first practical step towards making self-drive cars common is designating a portion of the A9 autobahn for testing. According to Mr. Dobrindt, the A9 is one of the busiest roads in the country and hence the perfect place for testing prototypes.

     

    The move has been initiated by German carmakers who feel Google can get there first if they don’t act first. It is on their behest that the government has taken this step. If rumors are to be believed, 2020 would be the year that driverless cars become available to the general public for use.

  • Toyota Still #1 will 2015 be a Smooth Ride?

    It comes as no surprise that Toyota remained number-one in terms of number of vehicles sold in 2014. The company has been holding the pole position for some time now and even now, it seems unlikely they will let go anytime soon. The company was able to sell more than both GM and Volkswagen, its biggest competitors. However, some industry insiders believe 2014 could be the end of Toyota’s reign as the best-selling car brand on the planet. It all depends on how the company is able to deal with the challenges it is expected to face in the current year. Let's see if Toyota's smooth ride lasts.

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  • Benefits of Shock Absorbers

    A vehicle is incomplete if it lacks what are known as shock absorbers. As the name implies, shock absorbers generally absorb unpleasant bumps and vibrations caused by travelling on unavoidable holes or bumpy roads. Not only do they play an important role in enhancing a driver’s control over their vehicle, but also help improve overall vehicle performance. In this guide, you will learn about the top 5 benefits of shock absorbers. Continue reading

  • Everything You Need to Know about Spark Plugs

    Spark plugs are small electrical devices installed in the internal combustion engine. These plugs typically have an insulated center electrode which is connected to a magneto circuit on the outside and the ignition coil by a heavily insulated wire. So, what is the function of these plugs? Well, generally these plugs are responsible for creating a spark that lights up the air-fuel mix. Do they help save gas? Why, yes of course they do, but before we move on to how, let’s take a look at the components of a spark plug: Continue reading

  • What are the Different Types of Air Filters?

    The air filter is a car part that is attached to the engine to improve air quality inside the vehicle and protect the engine from dirt, mud, and other debris. It also plays an important role in vehicle performance and helps maintain fuel efficiency. However, in due time, these air filters can get clogged of dirt and debris, robbing your engine of power, they need to be changed after every few months. Are you planning on replacing your car’s air filter as well? If so, then let’s take a look at the different types of air filters to determine the perfect choice for your vehicle. Continue reading

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