Mini and Lexus have topped a poll measuring customer satisfaction. Mini, a sub-brand of BMW, got its third consecutive top scoring among mass market brands, while Lexus enjoyed its second year in a row as the best in the luxury segment, according to a study in the USA by the global market research company J. D. Power. The report, published on November 28, indicates that around 80 per cent of new car buyers rely on the internet for making choices over which dealers to visit by using ratings sites, where other owners have remarked on their own experiences, rather than reviews. Chris Sutton, a J.D. Power spokesman, said: "New-vehicle buyers are using the internet to read the reviews and recommendations of other buyers who have experience with a particular dealer, so it would be prudent for dealers to ensure their customers have had a satisfying experience."
Fisker suffering as supplier goes under
Fisker, the luxury electric carmaker, is having a hard time of things at the moment. Having been dealt body blows by the US press over reports of reliability issues, sales of its sleek Karma saloon have been slow off the mark. And now the supplier of the Karma's lithium-ion batteries, A123 Systems, has declared itself bankrupt. Fisker has responded by shelving all production for the time being, saving any spare batteries for use as replacements for existing Karmas, should they be required. Fisker's co-founder and chairman, Henrik Fisker, has also told website thedetroitbureau.com that his company is actively "seeking potential strategic partners" to help fund future development and production.
Welsh road warnings confuse the English
Drivers in England have been confused by road warnings written in Welsh. According to the UK's Sunday Telegraph, drivers in Hampshire, England, have been flummoxed by written warnings such as"perygl sgidio" (skid risk), "dim marciau ffordd" (no road markings) and "cyflymder uchaf" (maximum speed).The signs were mistakenly applied by a contractor using Welsh. Roads policy in Wales is to have bilingual signage for everything, yet the Hampshire roads are 160km from anywhere that could be considered Welsh.
Jaguar keeps its profile high with new models
As Jaguar prepares for production of its all-new sports car, the eagerly awaited F-Type, it has just unveiled a potent saloon: the XFR-S. Using the 5.0L, V8 engine from the XKR-S GT car, it means a 40hp increase over the XFR - a car that managed to outshine even the BMW M5 in the eyes of many experts. There's no word yet regarding how many will be earmarked for the GCC but it's said to be a very limited production run, with the first examples going on sale next summer.
Strongman pulls lorry by his ears for record
A strongman has attempted to set a Guinness world record by pulling a lorry that weighs more than eight tonnes by one of his ears. Lasha Pataraya, of Georgia, Europe, pulled the vehicle 21.3 metres with a rope attached to one of his ears. His feat can be viewed on YouTube, where you'll find he is a man of few words and one very sore ear. He is waiting for confirmation from the Guinness Book of Records.