MotorWeek

As the Emmy® Award-winning host, executive producer and creator of MotorWeek, television's longest running automotive series, John Davis is seen by millions of viewers on PBS, SPEED and V-me Spanish-language network. One of the most trusted and recognized automotive journalists in the nation, Davis has been featured on CNN, Weekend Today, Live with Regis and Kelly, PARADE magazine and The Baltimore Sun, as well as local media throughout the country. He has also written regularly on automotive industry topics for The Washington Post. As MotorWeek's host and executive producer since the series debuted in 1981, Davis oversees all editorial content, and has put every new car and truck model manufactured in the last 30 years through extensive road tests to judge their practicality for buyers. He recognizes that as the second biggest purchase Americans make, car buyers must be well-informed before they enter a dealer showroom. That's why MotorWeek's focus is on helping consumers make smart choices based on their lifestyles and finances, as well as safety considerations and the vehicle's impact on the environment. As one of the first mainstream media outlets to provide regular coverage of alternative fuels and "green" vehicle technology, Davis and MotorWeek have worked with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to promote public awareness about the impact renewable fuels can have on petroleum dependence and the environment. He has been a speaker at DOE's "Clean Cities" conferences and makes presentations to industry leaders and federal officials. Davis has also been involved in raising public awareness about other important automotive-related issues. In 2004 and 2005, he served as a spokesperson for the North Carolina Department of Transportation's program promoting annual automotive emissions inspections. In 2002, Davis was spokesperson for the "Smooth Operator" initiative to combat aggressive driving in the Washington Metro region. Davis is one of the founders of the North American Car & Truck of The Year Awards, the only independent journalistic automotive award in North America. He served on its executive board from 1994 to 2008. He is also one of the organizers and an original member of the Washington Automotive Press Association. Davis is a former president of the International Motor Press Association, the oldest and most prestigious organization of automotive journalists in North America. Davis has received some of the highest awards in automotive journalism and television, including two Emmy® Awards. In 2007, he won an Emmy® Award from the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS) National Capital Chesapeake Bay Region, and in 1998 from the NATAS Chicago-Midwest Chapter. Davis also received an International Automotive Media Award in 2005 from the International Society for Vehicle Preservation. He was honored with International Wheel Awards in 2004 and 2003, and two Golden Wheel Awards in 1999, including the grand award, from the Detroit Press Foundation which recognizes the best in automotive journalism. A 1970 mechanical and aerospace engineering graduate of North Carolina State University, Davis also holds a master of business administration degree from the University of North Carolina. He was the 1969-1970 recipient of the W.D. Cartwright Memorial Engineering Scholarship and a member of the Pi Tau Sigma honorary scholastic fraternity. Prior to joining Maryland Public Television, Davis worked for the Wall Street brokerage firm of Kidder, Peabody and Company as a transportation analyst. He has owned a variety of high performance cars, including a vintage Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Corvette and deTomaso Pantera.

From MotorWeek

  • This Just In: 2019 Chevrolet Silverado Surprise Reveal
    <h4>Chevrolet is closing in on 100 years of making trucks and on Saturday they staged a surprise reveal of the 2019 Silverado 1500 full-size pickup truck.</h4> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="430" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/SETyZLN0UmI" width="764"></iframe></p> <h4></h4> <h4><span style="font-size: 1em;">As the crowd looked on at Texas Motor Speedway, a single helicopter delivered a red Silverado LT Trailboss, which uses off-road bits from the Z71 package and adds a two-inch lift. The Trailboss is one of eight 2019 Silverado models set to officialy debut at the 2018 North American International Auto Show next month - exactly 100 years to the day of the brand's first truck deliveries to customers.</span></h4> <h4><span style="font-size: 1em;"><br /></span></h4> <h4>The totally redesigned 2019 Silverado is expected to use a combination of steel and aluminum to shed weight. Many details are still a secret, but we'll get those in Detroit in just a few short weeks, so stay tuned!<img height="2602" src="/images/2019_Silverado_Front.jpg" width="4800" /><img height="2517" src="/images/2019_Silverado_Rear.jpg" width="4800" /></h4>
  • Podcasts: 2017 L.A. Auto Show, Ducati Scrambler Desert Sled, Indian Scout Bobber
    <p><a href="http://www.motorweek.org/podcasts/Motorweek_Podcast__171.mp3">Podcast #171</a></p><p>In <em>MotorWeek</em> Podcast 171, John Davis and the gang talk about <em>MotorWeek</em>'s coverage of the 2017 LA Auto Show. Brian Robinson shares about his latest motorcycle tests. Plus, the panel talks about their favorite new cars, and they answer a viewer question about the EPA&rsquo;s CO2 ratings for vehicles.</p>
  • This Just In: World Drive, Detroit Decision &amp; Polestar Markets
    <h4 style="text-align: center;">Mercedes-Benz is testing self-driving technology on a global scale.&nbsp; The company is on the 4-th leg of their Intelligent World Drive.&nbsp; An autonomous S-Class is being tested in South Africa.&nbsp; Engineers are seeing how the technology handles a variety of real world situations, including different road surfaces, wildlife on rural roads and many pedestrians.&nbsp; The drive began in Germany.&nbsp; Then it was on to Shanghai in October, and Australia in November.&nbsp; The drive on five continents in five months ends in the U.S. next month.</h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;"><img height="569" src="/images/Mercedes_Benz_World_Drive.jpg" width="853" /></h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;">Ford&rsquo;s vision for the future is firmly planted in the past.&nbsp; Ford has announced plans to locate its autonomous vehicle and electric vehicle business and strategy teams in Detroit.&nbsp; They&rsquo;ll be working in a 110-year old building known as &ldquo;The Factory&rdquo; in Detroit&rsquo;s Corktown neighborhood.&nbsp; The industrial complex has been refurbished.&nbsp; Ford expects to begin operating out of the facility early next year.</h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;"><img height="579" src="/images/Ford_Corktown_Detroit.jpg" width="853" /></h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;">Polestar has chosen the markets where the Polestar 1 will be initially launched.&nbsp; Polestar Spaces, their term for dealerships, will be in the U.S.A., China, Germany, Sweden, Norway, and the Netherlands.&nbsp; Polestar says these countries showed strong customer interest when the brand launched in October.&nbsp; The Polestar 1 is a 2+2 Grand Touring Coup&eacute; with a 600hp Electric Performance Hybrid powertrain and an electric range of 93 miles.&nbsp; The Polestar Spaces are expected to open the middle of 2019, around the same time when production begins at the new Polestar plant in China.</h4> <p><img height="980" src="/images/Polestar_1.jpg" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" width="853" /></p>
  • Episodes: Episode 3715
    <p>Debut 12.15.2017</p> <p class="quick_listing">Description</p> <p>Road Test: 2017 Mercedes-Benz G550</p> <p>Goss' Garage: Resto Radio</p> <p>FYI: Full Service Gas Station</p> <p>Quick Spin: 2018 Genesis G80 Sport</p> <p>Quick Spin: 2018 Porsche Panamera Turbo Executive</p> <p>Quick Spin: 2018 Ford Expedition</p> <p>Road Test: 2017 Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid</p> <a href="https://mpt-shop.myshopify.com/collections/motorweek" target="_blank" class="dvd_purchase"></a> <div class="shadow_holder"> <div class="clear"><!-- --></div><!-- .clear --> <div class="shadow_right_small"><!-- --></div><!-- .shadow_right_small --> <div class="clear"><!-- --></div><!-- .clear --> </div><!-- .shadow_holder --> <div class="shadow_holder"> <div class="clear"><!-- --></div><!-- .clear --> <div class="shadow_right_small"><!-- --></div><!-- .shadow_right_small --> <div class="clear"><!-- --></div><!-- .clear --> </div><!-- .shadow_holder -->
  • This Just In: Future Jetta, G-Class Interior &amp; Toyota Milestone
    <h4 style="text-align: center;">The calendar is changing to 2018 soon, but car makers are already giving us a glimpse of what 2019 will look like.&nbsp; That includes Volkswagen.&nbsp; The company has released sketches of the all-new 2019 Jetta.&nbsp; MotorWeek will see it in person during the debut at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit next month.</h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;"><img height="512" src="/images/2019_VW_Jetta_sketch_front.jpg" width="853" /></h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;"><img height="512" src="/images/2019_VW_Jetta_sketch_rear.jpg" width="853" /></h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;"><img height="361" src="/images/2019_VW_Jetta_sketch_interior.jpg" width="853" /></h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;">Mercedes-Benz is taking us inside the new G-Class.&nbsp; The rugged off-roader gets an updated interior.&nbsp; The instrument panel has been redesigned, but G-Class fans will still recognize the tube-look analogue dials which are standard.&nbsp; A more modern option is similar to the wide screen cockpit seen in the E-Class and S-Class sedans.&nbsp; Two 12.3-inch displays blend seamlessly under a shared glass cover showing a virtual instrument panel and central display.&nbsp; Mercedes-Benz is holding on to classic G-Class elements as well, like the grab handle in front of the front passenger.</h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;"><img height="459" src="/images/Mercedes_G-Class_Interior.jpg" width="853" /></h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;">Toyota is celebrating a milestone.&nbsp; The one millionth Toyota Corolla rolled off the line at the plant in Blue Springs, Mississippi.&nbsp; The first Corolla was built there in 2011, but the Japanese company has been operating in the Magnolia State for a decade.</h4> <p><img height="569" src="/images/Toyota_2017_One_Millionth_Corolla_Mississippi.JPG" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" width="853" /></p>
  • Book Reviews: Porsche: The Classic Era
    <p><img class="img_left" height="195" src="/images/book_reviews/3715_porsche_the_classic_era.jpg" style="float: left;" width="300" />Call us crazy, but even with all of the Porsche books we&rsquo;ve read over the years, we can&rsquo;t get enough of them. The latest to cross our desk is <em>Porsche: The Classic Era</em> by Dennis Adler. The first part of this book focuses on Ferdinand Porsche&rsquo;s early years as a highly sought after automotive engineer who always dreamed of building an affordable sports car. But that dream kept getting put on the back burner due to other priorities, such as designing the Volkswagen Beetle, developing race cars, and yes unfortunately getting forced into engineering vehicles for the German war machine. So, it wasn&rsquo;t until 1948, that the first Porsche 356 prototype hit the streets. The rest, as they say, is history. From there, the book fast forwards to the development of the 911, does a cursory look at Porsche&rsquo;s racing cars, and even runs through some Porsche advertisements and literature. So, no matter how many Porsche books you&rsquo;ve already read, you&rsquo;re sure to learn something new from this Must Read.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p>
  • Road Tests: 2017 Mercedes-Benz G550 4X4 squared
    <p class="review_title">Vital Statistics</p> <p><span>Engine:</span> 4.0 liter</p> <p><span>Horsepower:</span> 416</p> <p><span>Torque:</span> 450 lb-ft.</p> <p><span>0-60 mph:</span> 6.5 seconds</p> <p><span>1/4 mile:</span> 15.1 seconds @ 91 mph</p> <p><span>EPA:</span> 11 mpg city/ 11 mpg highway</p> <p><span>Energy Impact:</span> 30.0 barrels of oil/yr</p> <p><span>CO2 Emissions:</span> 13.7 tons/yr</p> <p>The original Jeep was the first military vehicle that found widespread popularity in civilian dress. Then came the Hum-Vee, which also spawned GM&rsquo;s hummer brand of over-the-top 4x4s. Still, the Mercedes-Benz G-Class, or G-Wagen, stands apart. Now in production for almost 40-years, the &ldquo;Gelandewagon&rdquo; has long since left its military side behind, and become the pinnacle of Mercedes exclusivity.</p> <p>Whether it&rsquo;s our own Jeep and Hummer, Japan&rsquo;s Land Cruiser, or Britain&rsquo;s Land Rover, every developed country seems to have a battle-ready vehicle built to conquer both enemy territory as well as suburbia. For almost 40 years in Germany that role has been played by the Mercedes-Benz G-wagen, or as it&rsquo;s now known, the G-Class.&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>As has always been the case with all of these military-inspired utes, the G-Class has become more-and-more popular, continuing to grow more user-friendly, with ever increasing levels of comfort and luxury.&nbsp;</p> <p><img class="img_left" height="277" src="/images/road_tests/2017_mercedes_benz_G550_4x4_squared_2.jpg" style="float: left;" width="300" />But then every once in a while, engineers seem intent on proving that these leather-lined rigs are built for a lot more than just trolling country clubs or making a statement in the carpool lane. Thus, we get special versions like this 2017 Mercedes-Benz G550 4X4 squared.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p> <p>It&rsquo;s large, in charge, and towers over just about everything on the road. Yet despite the massive rolling stock, jacked-up suspension, and high center of gravity; steering remains responsive, and there&rsquo;s very minimal wandering, even at highway speeds. Of course there&rsquo;s not much sidewall flexing with these 22-inch wheels wearing 325/55 Pirelli Scorpion A/Ts either. Overall, it feels more tame and confident, than macho or overbearing.&nbsp;</p> <p>Moving this behemoth around is a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 that delivers 416&ndash;horsepower and 450 lb-ft. of torque. It feels fantastically powerful, just adding to the assertive nature that this truck gives you.&nbsp;</p> <p>We let it loose at our test track and hit 60 in just 6.5-seconds. For reference that&rsquo;s over 3 seconds faster than the last Hummer H2 we tested. There&rsquo;s enough low end grunt at launch to spin these 22s up a bit, but not enough to make it too difficult to get away cleanly.&nbsp;</p> <p>Plenty of mid-range beef keeps it moving, while the 7G-Tronic automatic clicks through gears quickly and firmly. It&rsquo;s easy to forget you&rsquo;re riding so high off the ground, as the &frac14;-mile flies by in 15.1-seconds and 91 miles-per-hour.&nbsp;</p> <p>Perhaps more impressively, the 4X4 squared will stop from 60 in just 112-feet. Pretty amazing considering it weighs an astounding 6,700-lbs.&nbsp;</p> <p><img class="img_right" height="181" src="/images/road_tests/2017_mercedes_benz_G550_4x4_squared_4.jpg" style="float: right;" width="300" />But, on to what this thing is really all about, off road supremacy.&nbsp; Mercedes has taken the already capable G-wagen to the ultimate extreme, and it all starts with new portal axles.&nbsp;</p> <p>The quick and dirty way of explaining what they are, for those of you who don&rsquo;t read Crazy Offroad Vehicle Weekly; is the rear differential and axles, instead of being directly inboard of the wheels, are mounted much higher, up in the frame. And power gets down to the wheels through a set of gears.&nbsp; It allows for a whopping 17-inches of ground clearance; that&rsquo;s about 10-inches over a stock G-class.&nbsp;</p> <p>All three differentials can be locked, and while there is some electrical assistance, it&rsquo;s nothing like a nearly automated Land Rover. Here, you pretty much take control of everything.&nbsp;</p> <p>After two weeks of blasting around hill and dale in this beast, we found it hard not to be nervous about tearing up the terrain in this thing. But, it seemed to laugh off the worst we could muster around here. Our biggest test complaints come down to defaulting to eco power and comfort suspension every time you power it up, and the awkwardly low hanging rear bumper obviously done for compliance sake.&nbsp;</p> <p>Once you manage the extremely high up entry, you&rsquo;ll find nothing lacking in creature comforts. This brute is every bit a Mercedes-Benz; whether you&rsquo;re talking about the quilted leather upholstery, climate-controlled seats, or features like navigation and onboard WiFi.&nbsp;</p> <p><img class="img_left" height="182" src="/images/road_tests/2017_mercedes_benz_G550_4x4_squared_3.jpg" style="float: left;" width="300" />The boxy Bronco-ish body gets a lift of its own; while fender flares get serious extensions to cover all of that rubber.&nbsp;</p> <p>And yes, Government Fuel Economy Ratings are as abysmal as you expect, 11-City, 11-Highway, and 11-Combined. Hey, at least they&rsquo;re consistent. Somehow, we managed to eke out 13.3 miles-per-gallon on Premium.&nbsp;</p> <p>The Energy Impact Score is about as bad as it gets too, burning through 30.0-barrels of oil every year, and emitting 13.7-tons of CO2.&nbsp;</p> <p>By far, the worse numbers are the OMG prices. While you can get into a base G550 for $123,325, you&rsquo;ll have to pony up at least $225,925 to get squared. Of course, you could build an equally capable Wrangler for half of that, but that&rsquo;s not exactly the point of this rig now is it?&nbsp;</p> <p>So, what is the point of the 2017 Mercedes-Benz G550 4X4 squared?&nbsp; Well, it&rsquo;s a way for Mercedes-Benz engineers to showcase what the brand is capable of.&nbsp; And at the same time, if you can afford it, you get to enjoy their labor of love, on or off road, in one of the most insane vehicles we&rsquo;ve ever driven.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p>
  • This Just In: Volvo Self-Driving &amp; Tesla Big Rig
    <h4 style="text-align: center;">Volvo is adding real people into their research of self-driving cars.&nbsp; The company says two families in Sweden are now part of the Drive Me project.&nbsp; They&rsquo;ve been given specially equipped Volvo XC90 SUVs.&nbsp; Along with the latest driver assistance technology, the vehicles come with cameras and sensors so engineers can monitor how the families use and interact with the technology.&nbsp; Three more families will join the project early next year.&nbsp; As many as 100 people will be involved in the Drive Me research during the next four years.&nbsp; Volvo plans to have a fully autonomous car available for sale by 2021.</h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;"><img height="480" src="/images/Volvo_Drive_Me_graphic.jpg" width="853" /></h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;">Another company is signing up for Tesla&rsquo;s big rig.&nbsp; <a href="https://www.reuters.com/article/us-pepsico-tesla-orders/pepsico-makes-biggest-public-pre-order-of-tesla-semis-100-trucks-idUSKBN1E61FB">Reuters</a> is reporting PepsiCo has reserved 100 of the Tesla electric semi-trucks.&nbsp; The huge haulers will carry PepsiCo beverages and snacks.&nbsp; A few days ago MotorWeek told you Anheuser-Busch announced ordering 40 Tesla semi-trucks.&nbsp; Reuters says 267 Tesla trucks have been reserved so far.&nbsp; Tesla says production of the electric semis will begin in 2019.</h4> <p><img height="480" src="/images/Tesla_Beer_Truck_2.jpg" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" width="853" /></p>
  • This Just In: Car Deals. Ultimate McLaren &amp; Toyota Tease
    <h4 style="text-align: center;">They say timing is everything; that also applies to buying a new car.&nbsp; <a href="https://www.huffingtonpost.com/gobankingrates/the-best-and-the-worst-ti_b_9473316.html">The Huffington Post</a> has some tips to improve your chance of getting the best deal possible.&nbsp; They say October, November &amp; December are some of the best months to buy.&nbsp; The reason?&nbsp; Dealers are anxious to get rid of this year&rsquo;s models to make room for next year&rsquo;s offerings.&nbsp; However, some models come out later in the year, so you have to pay attention to the life cycle of the vehicle you have your eye on.&nbsp; They also suggest doing the deal at the end of the day, at the end of the month, and on a Sunday to save the most money.</h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;"><img height="479" src="/images/traffic2.jpg" width="853" /></h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;">McLaren has unveiled what they call their most extreme road car yet.&nbsp; The McLaren Senna roars to life with a 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged V8 that produces 789 hp and 590 lb. ft. of torque.&nbsp; Not only is it the most powerful McLaren road car with an internal combustion engine, it&rsquo;s also the lightest.&nbsp; The McLaren Senna is named after Ayrton Senna, the legendary Formula 1 driver.&nbsp; This is part of McLaren&rsquo;s new Ultimate Series.&nbsp; The company only plans to build 500.&nbsp; The price starts at just over $1,000,000.</h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;"><img height="640" src="/images/McLaren_Senna.jpg" width="853" /></h4> <h4 style="text-align: center;">The new year will bring something new from Toyota.&nbsp; The company has released a teaser photo of the all-new 2019 Avalon.&nbsp; MotorWeek will see it in person at the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit next month.</h4> <p><img height="569" src="/images/2019_Toyota_Avalon.jpg" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" width="853" /></p>
  • This Just In: Tesla Beer Deliveries &amp; Honda Robots
    <h4 style="text-align: center;">This Bud will be brought to you by Tesla.&nbsp; Anheuser-Busch has announced ordering 40 Tesla semi-trucks.&nbsp; The electric trucks will be capable of autonomous driving.&nbsp; Anheuser-Busch says the deal is part of their plan to reduce their operational carbon footprint by 30 percent by 2025.&nbsp; The beer maker is also working with other companies to incorporate new technology into their fleet of trucks.</h4> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="/images/Tesla_Beer_Truck_2.jpg" /></p> <h4 style="text-align: center;">Honda is working on vehicles that can drive themselves even when the asphalt ends.&nbsp; The company plans to unveil several robotic concepts next month.&nbsp; One of their ideas is an autonomous off-road vehicle concept with Artificial Intelligence.&nbsp; They say it could help people with work activities.&nbsp; They&rsquo;re also revealing a small electric mobility concept that can carry cargo.&nbsp; These, and the rest of their robo plans will be on display at The Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas January 9-12, 2018.</h4> <p><img height="480" src="/images/Honda_robots_CES_2018.jpg" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" width="853" /></p>

 

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