Roadtrek Motorhomes Inc., launched a new model, the Zion based on the Ram ProMaster, in Kitchener, Ontario with company and Chrysler representatives on hand.
(From left) Ben Spengen, Roadtrek Motorhomes; Bob Johnson and Jeff Sloan, Chrysler Fleet Operations; Karyn Torcoletti, Jim Hammill, Paul Cassidy, and Howard Stratton, Roadtrek Motorhomes; Al Coulas, Chrysler Canada; Jeff Stride, Roadtrek Motorhomes; and Ken Tuckey, Chrysler Canada.
“This is likely to be our biggest product launch in 10 years” said Jim Hammill, President, Roadtrek. “We are thrilled to able to showcase the Zion to the market. It’s the coach everyone has been waiting for and we are already buried in orders”
Chrysler executives toured the factory and saw the Zion rolled out.
“We at Chrysler couldn’t be more pleased with this new Zion model that Roadtrek has produced. It’s stunning,” said Ken Tuckey, Senior Manager of National Fleet and Commercial Vehicles, Chrysler Canada.
Roadtrek Zion has an open concept floor plan and ivory interior. Zion will officially begin production February 2015.
“We had orders from our dealers almost instantaneously” said Paul Cassidy, Vice-President of Sales, Roadtrek. “The Zion hit the market with so much intensity that dealers are writing deals with retail customers without having seen one.”
December 22, 2014
CHRYSLER GROUP LLC NOW KNOWN AS FCA US LLC
Chrysler Group LLC has announced that it company name will now be FCA US LLC effective immediately. The name change follows in the global parent company’s name change to Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (FCA) in October.
The name change will not affect the company’s headquarters location in Auburn Hills, Michigan, its holdings, management team, board or brands.
December 10, 2014
RANGER DESIGN INC NEW STORAGE EQUIPMENT FOR RAM PROMASTER CITY
Ranger Design Inc., has released new shelving, ladder racks and partitions for the 2015 Ram ProMaster City. The equipment is already available, and ‘first-to-market’ for the ProMaster City; available from dealers soon.
“This gives tradesmen an adequate amount of time to research their options and discuss their needs with professionals in view of upfitting their van with the exact type of equipment that they will be relying on daily” said Ron Cowie, Vice-President, Ranger Design.
The delivery shelving options have a capacity of up to 65 pounds per linear foot of static load, they also fold out of the way when not in use and can be quickly reconfigured. Ladder racks and special racks designed to transport ladders up to 28 feet in length are also available.
December 2, 2014
EMKAY LAUNCHES MASTERCARD FUEL CARD
EMKAY Canada has added a new MasterCard fuel card for business, as well as an enhanced Maintenance Procurement platform.
“The new MasterCard fuel product will provide clients and future clients with the highest levels of security, by combining the latest CHIP and PIN technology, along with an enhanced maintenance procurement platform that will simplify the maintenance process for both the driver and maintenance provider” said Lisa Shavrnoch, Director Fleet Operations, EMKAY Canada.
Clients have enhanced fuel purchase control features including: daily, weekly, and monthly purchase limits and fuel-only capabilities. The controls can eliminate driver purchases of non-automotive products, and provide immediate visibility to transactions processed at national fuel vendors.
Enhancements to EMKAY’s maintenance procurement platform include a dual driver/supplier instruction card providing instant authorizations up to a driver’s pre-determined limit without further pre-authorization.
December 1, 2014
VOLVO OPENS “RETAIL EXPERIENCE” DEALERSHIP IN MONTREAL
Volvo Cars of Canada unveiled its first Volvo Retail Experience concept store in Montreal, Quebec with the opening of the the John Scotti Volvo dealership. The new concept is meant to enhance customer experience and focus on design quality and contemporary aesthetics.
Marc Engelen (third from left), President and CEO, Volvo Canada with the Scotti family.
“The Volvo Retail Experience concept is a positive signal of Volvo’s commitment to Canada as well as the brand’s bright future in the automotive landscape,” said Marc Engelen, President and CEO, Volvo Cars of Canada. “John Scotti Volvo is the first retailer in North America to showcase the Volvo Retail Experience concept demonstrating their continued dedication to the re-invigoration of the Volvo brand.”
November 21, 2014
TRAC RELEASES USE OF WINTER TIRES SURVEY
According to a Tire and Rubber Association of Canada (TRAC) survey conducted by Leger, only 51 per cent of drivers outside of Quebec (where winter tires are mandatory) use winter tires on vehicles.
Drivers were questioned as to whether they had used winter tires this past winter. Results; highest usage outside Quebec was Atlantic Canada (73 per cent), Ontario (56 per cent), Alberta (45 per cent), Manitoba and Saskatchewan (39 per cent) and British Columbia (38 per cent).
Individual drivers who did not use winter tires cited the following reasons:
• 63 per cent said that all-seasons are good enough for winter driving;
• 27 per cent cited cost as a barrier for not using winter tires;
• 22 per cent said they don't drive enough in cold-weather months to merit winter tires;
"The fact that so many drivers are not using winter tires is a clear threat to road safety," said Glenn Maidment, President, TRAC. "Today's high-tech winter tires dramatically outperform all-season tires in all winter driving conditions. Despite all the evidence pointing to the fact that winter tires decrease collisions and reduce personal injury accidents, resistance to adopting winter tires remains strong."
November 17, 2014
MERCEDES-BENZ CHANGES VEHICLE DESIGNATION PROCESS
Mercedes-Benz announced that it will be changing how it names its vehicles. Going forward all vehicles will centre around five main classes: A, B, C, E and S classes. Therefore all SUVs will be named GL (apart from the G-Class), the third letter will be based on the model series of the vehicle.
SUV naming will be as follows:
GLA – GL A-class
GLC – GL C-class (currently the GLK)
GLE – GL E-class (currently the M-Class or ML)
GLE Coupe – GL E-Class Coupe
GLS – GL S-class (currently GL)
In turn, all four-door coupes will carry CL names; the third letter being based on the model series, CLA or CLS for example. All roadsters begin with the SL name (the SL model itself staying the same), so the SLK becomes the SLC.
Also, a change is how different alternative fuel powertrains are displayed on the vehicles. They are: c for CNG, d for diesel, e for electric, f for fuel cell, and h for hybrid. No suffix will be used for gasoline engines.
November 17, 2014
MAZDA CANADA INTRODUCES UNLIMITED MILEAGE WARRANTY
Mazda Canada 2015 vehicles will no longer have distance limitations on factory warranty coverage as Mazda has introduced a Unlimited Mileage Warranty for 2015 model year vehicles.
"Mazda's focus is on long-term customer satisfaction," said Kory Koreeda, President, Mazda Canada Inc. "By offering our customers an Unlimited Mileage Warranty, we believe it will enhance their ownership experience by alleviating concerns such as kilometre limitations, repair costs and resale value."
Warranty coverage for Mazda vehicles will be as follows:
The warranty covers all 2015 model year vehicles, including those that have already been purchased, and is fully transferable.
"An Unlimited Mileage Warranty fits perfectly with our brand," said David Klan, Senior Director of Sales, Marketing and Regional Operations. "Mazda is a company that always challenges traditional conventions to make improvements. Driving enjoyment is essential to Mazda; it's in our DNA, and every car we make. So offering a different kind of warranty that doesn't restrict customers from enjoying their vehicle and driving as much, or as far, as they want is an ideal fit."
For more information, visit: www.mazdaunlimited.ca.
November 10, 2014
HONDA CANADA INVESTS $857 MILLION IN ONTARIO PLANTS
Honda of Canada Mfg. (HCM), a division of Honda Canada Inc., will invest $857 million over three years in manufacturing plants in Alliston, Ontario. Honda will benefit from the Government of Ontario’s 10 per cent of the investment.
(From left) Brad Duguid, Ontario Minister of Economic Development, Employment and Infrastructure, Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario and Jerry Chenkin, President and CEO, Honda Canada Inc., announced investment at Honda Canada’s Alliston plant.
“We are deeply proud to be the lead plant for the next generation of Honda Civic, a designation that reflects the incredible efforts of Honda associates over the past quarter century to produce products of the highest quality for our customers in Canada and around the world,” said Jerry Chenkin, President and CEO, Honda Canada Inc. “This marks the first time a Honda plant outside Japan has been designated as a ‘global lead plant’, which reflects the knowledge and experience of our Canadian associates.”
The Alliston plant will be the global guide plant for the next generation Honda Civic; thus, it will be responsible for developing manufacturing processes and tooling trials which will be used worldwide at Honda plants that also build Civic.
Honda will also invest to modernize all Alliston plants to improve technologies and processes. Honda believes the investment will secure jobs both at the plants and through its supplier network.
“Through this investment in Ontario, Honda is tapping into our biggest strength, our highly skilled workforce,” said Kathleen Wynne, Ontario Premier. “Our government is hard at work to secure more partnerships like this, partnerships that keep good jobs here in Ontario and that build our economy up so that people have more opportunity and security.”
Honda has invested over $3.9 billion in manufacturing in Canada since 1986, at which time it became the first Japanese automaker to build a manufacturing facility in Canada.
November 4, 2014
MERCEDES-BENZ METRIS: A NEW NORTH AMERICAN MID-SIZE COMMERCIAL VAN
Mercedes-Benz announced that coming to Canada and the United States in last quarter 2015 will be the Metris (Vito in other global markets). The announcement was made at SEMA in Las Vegas, Nevada, where Mercedes is showing four modified versions of the new van.
Mercedes-Benz Metris at SEMA: RADO: Fire Chief Concept Truck.
“Mercedes-Benz Vans 2014 sales have been brisk so far in Canada, up 21.4 per cent year to date. The new generation Sprinter with its bold new look, numerous interior refinements, ground breaking safety systems and new powerful and fuel efficient four-cylinder BlueTEC diesel engine, has helped us achieve an unparalleled position in this market,” said Tim A. Reuss, President and CEO, Mercedes-Benz Canada. “Looking forward to 2015, the addition of a 4x4 variant to both the cargo and passenger versions of the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter and the introduction of the Mercedes-Benz Metris will undoubtedly continue to raise the bar and establish new thresholds in the commercial vehicle segment in Canada.”
The four vans on display in Las Vegas were: RENNtech: Party/DJ Van, HQ Custom Design: Luxury Van, RADO: Fire Chief Concept Truck, and Garmin: Mobile Golf Pro Shop.
Mercedes-Benz Metris at SEMA: RENNtech: Party/DJ Van.
“The introduction of the Metris is very timely for us to expand the Mercedes-Benz vans product portfolio by broadening the scope of business solutions available to our commercial clientele,” said Pablo de la Peña, Vice-President, Mercedes-Benz Vans.
November 4, 2014
CAA SOUTH CENTRAL ONTARIO ADDS SERVICE TRACKER
CAA South Central Ontario (CAA SCO) can now track roadside service requests with a new online service called CAA Service Tracker, which provides members with live updates on roadside assistance requests.
The free service uses a map to show the dispatched service vehicle and its estimated time of arrival, and average wait times in the area. It also allows a cancel option for a service request.
"We're proud to be the first auto club in Canada to provide this service to our members," said Cindy Hillaby, VP Membership and Automotive Services, CAA SCO. "CAA Service Tracker is convenient and easy to use and our members will be able to access the online tool from anywhere, whether at home or on the go through our website, on their mobile web browser or smartphone."
The service is available by downloading the CAA app or by visiting www.caasco.com.
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