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The Roundabout Blog

Week in review: Chevrolet brings Broadway to Beijing

  • Cheese in China

    In Beijing on 19 April, Chevrolet hosted a schmaltzy Gala Night, complete with an elaborate song-and-dance number to celebrate the Chinese-market debut of the Trax compact crossover. The weeklong motor show, which kicked off the following day with press previews, is China's largest; showcasing more than 1,100 vehicles and drawing more than 120,000 visitors per day. (Photo: STR/AFP/Getty Images)

  • From BMW, a chronicle of the Art Car

    The BMW Group and publisher Hatje Cantz this week announced the first comprehensive chronicle of the carmaker's famed series of Art Cars. The $45 coffee-table book, which will be available on Amazon.com in June, presents the history of the collection, which started in 1975 with artist Alexander Calder’s colourful 3.0 CSL – a car that ran in that year's 24 Hours of Le Mans with French driver Hervé Poulain at the wheel. Since then, 17 artists have made canvases of BMW models, including Andy Warhol, who painted an M1 Group 4 racing car in 1978 (pictured here), and Jeff Koons, who colourised an M3 GT2 in 2010. (Photo: BMW Group, via Newspress)

  • At Ford, Mulally succession plan in motion

    Alan R Mulally, the former Boeing chief who took the reins at Ford Motor in 2006, is expected to leave his post before the end of 2014, Automotive News reports. In his stead will rise Mark Fields (pictured), the automaker’s COO, who has been long rumoured to be Mulally’s successor. Mulally is widely admired within and outside the automotive industry for his stewardship of Ford, during which he sold off brands – including Aston Martin, Jaguar and Volvo – that did not reinforce his so-called One Ford strategy, and utilised cash reserves to float Ford during the financial crisis of 2008 and 2009, avoiding the bankruptcies that befell Chrysler and General Motors. Mulally is widely expected to take a chairman position on a corporate board, with speculation coalescing around consumer-products giant Procter & Gamble as his next move. (Photo: Ford Motor)

  • Nissan tests the self-cleaning car

    Pigeons take note: Nissan is exploring a new automotive finish that promises to keep cars permanently clean. Called Ultra-Ever Dry, the super-hydrophobic and oleophobic paint “uses proprietary omniphobic technology to coat an object and create a surface chemistry and texture with patterns of geometric shapes that have peaks,” according to its maker, US-based UltraTech International. It is these peaks that repel foreign matter – water, oil, salt, wet cement, bird droppings, you name it. Nissan demonstrated the self-cleaning paint on one half of a Versa Note, pictured here. The paint isn’t likely to come standard, but Nissan is considering it as an extra-cost option. (Photo: Nissan USA, via Newspress)

  • Volvo’s Torslanda factory turns 50

    On 24 April, Volvo’s factory in Torslanda, Sweden, celebrated 50 years of production. The milestone comes as Volvo cuts the ribbon on a 258,000-square-foot expansion to the sprawling factory, which will up the plant’s annual output from 200,000 to 300,000 vehicles. An Amazon (similar to those pictured above) was the first car to emerge from the factory on opening day. Next up for Torslanda: Volvo's second-generation XC90 sport-utility vehicle, due in 2015. (Photo: Volvo Cars, via Newspress)

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