AUDI A3 E-TRON
If you’ve been sitting around wondering what’s up with Audi’s delayed A3 Sportback E-tron, the only A3 hatchback headed to U.S. shores, we’ve got some info for you. It will now reportedly finally arrive by October.
The plug-in hybrid was originally slated to arrive in the U.S. earlier in the year, but it was delayed reportedly to tweak its powertrain. A number of recent reports suggest that Audi has been working to refine the gear for use in cold weather. The 2016 model hatchback features a 1.4-liter turbocharged engine with a compact 100-horsepower electric motor mounted to the six-speed gearbox. Oh yes, and a 8.8-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack. It delivers 204 horsepower 258 pound-feet of torque to the front wheels.
The A3 e-tron has been on sale in Europe since late 2014, priced at about $42,052 USD. But U.S. pricing and EPA fuel economy numbers won’t be released until closer to its launch here.
2016 FIAT 500
Fiat Chrysler plans to unveil its newest Fiat 500 on July 4th. Why July 4th, you ask. Well, that’s when the original rear-engined 500 made its public debut back in 1957.
The 2016 Fiat 500 will get some minor tweaks like restyled bumpers and lights. It will also be offered in new paint colors and additional alloy wheel designs will essentially round out the exterior updates. Inside, it will get Fiat Chrysler’s touch screen-based Uconnect infotainment system. Under the hood, some models could get a slight bump in power.
Following its July 4th unveiling, the updated model will make its public debut in September at the Frankfurt Motor Show and it will land in showrooms this fall. A brand new 500 is due out in either 2017 or 2018.
POSSIBLE 7TH TAKATA AIR BAG DEATH
There may be a 7th death now linked to defective Takata air bags, and this one also in a Honda. Investigators are looking into a crash that killed a Louisiana woman in a 2005 Honda Civic. The 22-year-old received a recall notice two days after the crash and two days before she died, according to a complaint filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Lafayette, La.
The accident happened back on April 5th when her car hit a utility pole. The lawsuit alleged that the driver’s side airbag “violently exploded and sent metal shards, shrapnel and/or other foreign material into the passenger compartment.”
At least six other deaths, all in Hondas, are attributed to the faulty air bags, along with more than 100 injuries.