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30th April 2009

Lifestyles & Trends: Ford Test-Drive Program Raises Money to Fight Breast Cancer

Is test-driving a car considered charity work? It is if you test-drive a Ford, Lincoln or Mercury through June 1. From now until then, Ford will donate $20 in the name of each test-driver to Susan G. Komen for the Cure as part of its Ford Advantage Plan.

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30th April 2009

Pontiac G8 GT Prices Cratering?

A member of our Best and Brightest found this 107-mile Pontiac G8 for $26,664. I called and verified the vehicle and price, although these things should always be verified in person. Has anyone else seen low price G8s? And how low will they go?

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30th April 2009

Bailout Watch PTFOA Fires Chrysler CEO Nardelli

The Presidential Task Force on Automobiles (PTFOA) has claimed its second Motown CEO scalp. Chrysler CEO Bob Nardelli announced his departure in paragraph eight of Chrysler’s official statement on the automaker’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing.

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30th April 2009

Québec & Nova Scotia Drivers: BEWARE

On April 1st, 2008 significant modifications to road safety regulations in the Canadian provinces of Québec and Nova Scotia went into effect. CTV.ca reports that handheld cellular phones are now verboten while at the wheel, though hands free devices are still tolerated. Nova Scotia will begin ticketing the offense immediately, while Québec has allowed for a three-month grace periods in which offenders will only receive stern warnings and moralizing sermons. The first offense in Nova Scotia will cost $165, while costing $80-$110 and three demerit points in Québec. Still not satisfied, road safety advocate Jean-Marie de Koeninck argues that “[h]ands-free is just as dangerous. (But) by forbidding the hand-held it does send a signal that there is a problem with the cellphone, there’s a problem with concentration”. Meanwhile, the same traffic safety bill in Québec also doubled all speeding fines , with new suspension of license provisions for those caught traveling at 40 km/h over the limit in under-60 zones, 50 km/h in 60-90 over zones, and 60 km/h over in 100+ zones. All in the name of safety, presumably.

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30th April 2009

SuperSergio

SuperSergio


29th April 2009 17:37

I’m a sucker for a good analogy, or even a bad one that is at least amusing. Mr Bursa has delivered a new moniker for Fiat Group’s CEO ahead of what could be a Big Day for him and Chrysler. Yes folks, SuperSergio could be a busy fellow tomorrow. He certainly talks a good game and has apparently impressed Obama – arguably another superhero. SS is seen in the industry as a turnaround expert who did good things at Fiat. Some say he takes his cue from Carlos Ghosn.

The latter likes to move the game along and keep momentum by adding new bits of jigsaw to the alliance – and then harvest the low-hanging fruit by applying tried and tested industrial lessons and cost-saving solutions. It can also divert attention and play well politically. Is Fiat coming off the rails again (it’s a very heavily indebted company and has just chalked up the first loss since 2004)? If it is, that might well be yesterday’s story when another alliance strategy starts to unfold tomorrow.

Chrysler quick rinse in Chapter 11 to start?

ANALYSIS: SuperSergio to the rescue



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30th April 2009

China Edges Up On UNIDO’s Rankings Of Industrial Competitiveness


Via China View

BEIJING, April 27 (Xinhua) — Singapore led the world in industrial competitiveness while China rose five places up from the 31st in 2000 to the 26th in 2005 in the rankings of the competitiveness industrial performance (CIP) index, according to the Industrial Development Report 2009 released here on Monday by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO.

The Industrial Development Report 2009 said China’s CIP has overtaken the Philippines and is approaching Thailand. In 2000, China ranked the 31st place by scoring 0.387 points in CIP index value. The value rose to 0.418 points in 2005, when data collection ended.

The UNIDO said the CIP index, which measures the ability of countries to produce and export competitively, was used to help assess national industrial performance in the global economy.

The CIP index combines four main dimensions of industrial competitiveness: industrial capacity, manufactured export capacity, industrialization intensity and export quality, it said.

The report said the CIP ranks changed little between 2000 and 2005, and countries at the top and bottom tended to maintain a relatively stable position.

According to the rankings, developed countries congregated near the top, countries with economies in transition and East Asian countries around the upper middle, low-income dynamic countries in the lower middle range, and low-income countries and the least-developed countries at the bottom.

Singapore led the rankings, by scoring 0.887 points of CIP index value in 2000 and 0.890 points in 2005. Ireland and Japan followed, along with Switzerland, Sweden and Germany.

The United States was the only mature industrial power that has seen a deterioration in its relative position, down from the 9th place in 2000 to the 11th in the 2005 ranking. This was the result of the improved performance of the Republic of Korea and China’s Taiwan, which ranked the 9th and 10th position in 2005, respectively.

The other two Top 10 countries in the 2005 ranking included Finland and Belgium, according to the report.

The 2009 report was first released this February in Vienna, Austria, where the UNIDO is based. Since then, the UNIDO had been making a worldwide tour of presentations to disseminate information of the report.

The UNIDO first introduced the CIP index in the Industrial Development Report 2002-2003, which was released in late 2002. In that report, China’s rankings jumped from the 61st position in 1985 to the 37th in 1998.

Complete Article



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