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Automotive News – December 19, 2011

The top 10 best selling vehicles for 2011. The year’s safest vehicles. Detroit Auto Show previews. These and other top stories from the automotive world in this week’s Automotive News.

And the Winners Are…

Forbes has released its list of the top-selling cars and light trucks for 2011. In descending order, the list is: 1) Ford F-150 Pickup, 2) Chevrolet Silverado Pickup, 3) Toyota Camry, 4) Nissan Altima, 5) Ford Escape, 6), Ford Fusion, 7) Honda Accord, 8) Toyota Corolla, 9) Chevrolet Cruze, and 10) Dodge Ram Pickup. The Chevy Cruze is the only new model on the top-10 list. The Ford F-150 has been America’s best-selling truck for 34 years straight!

Toyota and Subaru Produce Safest Cars in the U.S.

Ford F-150Toyota and Subaru lead the world’s automakers in the latest round of crash tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. There are 115 “Top Safety Pick” models on the list in 12 categories ranging from minicars to large pickups. Toyota placed 15 models on the list, including the Yaris, Camry and Prius. Subaru has all five of its models on the list, including the Impreza, Legacy and Outback.

Buick to Introduce New Small Crossover

Buick EncoreBuick has announced it will have a new crossover ready for the 2013 model year. Called the Encore, the vehicle will make its debut at the Detroit auto show in January. Industry sources say the Encore will be built on a version of GM’s front-wheel-drive Gamma subcompact platform, which is also used on its Opel Meriva MPV and Chevy Sonic. So far, Buick has released only teaser photos of the new vehicle.

New Engine for Cadillac ATS

2012 Cadillac ATSCadillac says its 2013 Cadillac ATS will utilize a new 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. This will be a different, more efficient engine than the 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine currently in the Buick Regal GS. Using a twin-scroll setup for a broad torque range, it will be able to produce 270 hp and 260 foot pounds of torque. Cadillac calls its upcoming ATS the BMW 3-Series Fighter as it’s designed to compete head-to-head with the popular German import.

California to Push Even Higher Emissions Standards

Auto emissionsCalifornia’s Air Resources Board (CARB) reportedly wants 1.4 million Zero Emissions Vehicles (ZEVs) to be sold in the state every year between 2018 and 2025. According to the board’s numbers, this will result in a reduction of 52 million metric tons of emissions annually. The CARD estimates by transitioning from petroleum-powered cars to electric and hydrogen-powered vehicles, California residents will save approximately $22 billion in fuel costs as well as $4,000 over the life of each car, even with the cost of the advanced technology.

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