No. 889
March 22, 2017

About The Autoextremist@PeterMDeLorenzo Author, commentator, influencer. "The Consigliere." Editor-in-Chief of

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MARCH 15, 2017

arrowdown.gif arrowdown.gifarrowdown.gifSergio Marchionne. Editor-In-Chief's Note: Now The Great Sergio says that he has "zero interest" in a merger with Volkswagen even though he brought up the idea with great fanfare in the wake of the GM-PSA deal. He backtracked, danced and spewed his usual bunch of unmitigated bullshit to reporters at the Trump appearance in Michigan this afternoon (3/15). Why the flip-flop? Because the reality is that VW has zero interest in a "merger" with anyone, especially with a convicted carpetbagging mercenary like Marchionne. As I said in this week's column, I am absolutely certain of one thing in all of this and that is when it all goes down, Marchionne won’t be entering into any negotiations from a position of strength. Instead, he will enter the room as a glorified accountant formerly known as “The Great Sergio,” dressed in an ugly-ass sweater and with his pants pockets turned inside out, just there trying to get the best deal for his boss. Marchionne wants nothing to do with VW because he knows damn well there will be no negotiation and no "merger" talk whatsoever. Instead it will be VW CEO Matthias Mueller saying something like, "Here's the number. Take it or leave it." VW will buy out FCA, strip the worthwhile assets from the company and let the rest die. And Marchionne and his minions will get a much smaller payout. And an entire industry will be licking its chops, looking forward to the day when the Unctuous Prick and his minions are forced to leave the stage, for good. -PMD

This is something called the Toyota 860, a Special Edition of Toyota's 86 sporty car. It has
exclusive Supernova Orange paint contrasted by black body stripes, a rear spoiler, heated outside mirrors and 17-inch alloy wheels. It also gets LED fog lights and a "unique" aerodynamic underbody panel. It also has a 4.2-inch multi-information display that features a G-force meter and stop watch. The special edition will also be available in Halo White, and only 860 units of each color will be made. This what Toyota has to say about it: “The 86 is recognized by enthusiasts for its impressive driving performance and its value-oriented price tag,” said John Myers, Toyota national manager vehicle marketing and communications. “The 860 Special Edition will amplify these core elements with an added dose of premium styling mixed with performance technology.” This is what we have to say about it: A classic paint and stripe job, the 860 Special Edition pretty much offers nothing for nobody. This is Toyota completely out of ideas. You can get one in late March, if a tape and stripe job floats your boat.

Once upon a time the SXSW was about music, but that's ancient history. Now it's a conference about, well, everything. At this year's SXSW festival Honda introduced "the ultimate motorcycle for the next generation of rider" – the 2017 Honda Rebel, plus the Honda Rebel + Aviator Nation limited edition cruiser. The Honda Rebel 300s and 500s were already completely refreshed for 2017. And when Aviator Nation founder, Paige Mycoskie (below), lent the inimitable 1970s vibe of her beloved California lifestyle brand to create the Honda Rebel + Aviator Nation edition, the result was "the perfect collaboration for the adventurous spirit wanting to get out and explore the world from a different vantage point," or so Honda PR minions say, anyway. "I was inspired by vintage motorcycles from the 70s," said Paige. "When I was given the opportunity to customize a 2017 Honda Rebel, I knew that I wanted to create a classic, clean look reminiscent of those heritage Honda bikes." The result is a user-friendly, lightweight cruiser that is undeniably Aviator Nation, capturing Paige's innate love of outdoor adventure, music and design. The hand-stitched brown leather seat with the embroidered Aviator Nation signature logo is a retro contrast to the black, glossy fenders that flank the bike. The gas tank's gold shimmer is a nod to vintage sparkle drum sets & guitars and is finished off with Aviator Nation's signature 4 stripes painted on in the brand's recognizable colors. Custom brown leather grips, round rear view mirrors, a minimalist tail light and caged head lamp are the cherries on top of Paige's design vision, according to Honda. The Honda Rebel + Aviator Nation bike made its first outdoor appearance at the Waterloo Records Day Parties during SXSW in Aviator Nation's on-site pop up shop.