THIS JUST IN
• IN FORD’S PLANS REPORT, the automaker noted that the F-150 has not only gained market share since the truck’s high-aluminum-content redesign in 2014 but also that its transaction prices are up $6,700 per vehicle, due largely to the popularity of premium models like the Platinum and King Ranch. “Ford’s F-Series revenues alone are higher than revenues of Fortune 500 icons such as Facebook, Coca Cola, and Nike,” says Ford. Wow!
•WE MATTER! A REPORT THAT SEMA forwarded from the U.S. Department of Commerce says the outdoor recreation industry’s annual gross output is around $673 billion. This represents 2 percent of the nation’s total gross domestic product (GDP) and surpasses other sectors, such as agriculture, petroleum and coal, and computer and electronic products. Outdoor recreation covers a variety of activities, from off-roading to biking, boating, hiking, and hunting. Motorized vehicles were the largest activity within the survey of 2016 data, accounting for $59.4 billion of gross output. The numbers correlate to millions of American jobs.
• FIAT CHRYSLER IS VOLUNTARILY recalling an estimated
180,975 trucks in the U.S. to help prevent occupants from inadvertently shifting their vehicles out of Park. FCA has found the brake transmission shift interlock may overheat on certain vehicles equipped with steering-column shift levers. This condition has been linked to protracted brake-pedal application while vehicles idle in Park. If overheating occurs, a vehicle’s shifter may be repositioned without brake-pedal application or the presence of a key in the ignition. Affected are certain 2017-2018 Ram 2500 and 3500 pickups; certain 2017
2018 Ram 3500, 4500, and
5500 chassis cabs; and 2016
2017 Ram 3500 chassis cabs with a GVWR of less than 10,000 pounds. Certain 2017-2018 Ram
1500 pickups are also included in the recall, but heavy-duty trucks represent the majority of affected vehicles.
BOLLINGER MOTORS, WHICH is developing the B1 all-electric, all-wheel-drive sport/utility truck we told you about in previous issues, has entered into an agreement with Optimal, Inc., a Detroit-area engineering firm, to help bring the B1 to production. Optimal’s experience in electric vehicle design, computer-aided engineering, and other aspects of vehicle optimization will take the B1 “to the next level of engineering excellence,” says Bollinger, and help the company reach its goal of starting production in late 2019.