Automakers have been in a lot of trouble over the last 24 hours.
Wake up and smell the gasoline; it's time for another daily roundup of the automotive industry's most important news stories of the last day, Cold Start. The dominant theme of the last 24 hours of news coverage has been trouble for automakers. For Chevrolet, news has emerged that it's paying Bolt EV owners $6,000, but only if they waive their right to legal action in the event of a battery fire. Things are worse for Jeep and Ram after they were heavily fined for diesel emission cheats - something Toyota's truck division Hino has also admitted to. Toyota, still dealing with the bad press surrounding a rejected warranty claim on an owner's GR86, is compensating bZ4X owners impressively due to the large volume of recalls on the EV.
It's not all doom and gloom, though; Carvana's Illinois license to sell cars has been reinstated, meaning it's business as usual for the used car platform. The biggest news we covered is that the Porsche 911 GT3 RS could get a new, 4.2-liter race car engine. Let's get to it.
After the Volkswagen Group Dieselgate scandal in 2015, diesel emissions have been problematic for several brands. FCA - now Stellantis - brands Jeep and Ram are facing the music over emissions cheating relating to the EcoDiesel engines used in models like the Wrangler and Ram 1500. The EPA first discovered the deception in 2017, and FCA US has now been placed on probation for 36 months and ordered to pay as much as $300 million in fines. More than 101,000 vehicles were included in the cheating saga, with the brand pleading guilty in June to the charges. Further charges may be leveled against the brand and high-level employees, but for now, the fines are already substantial.
Toyota is late to the EV party and has its hopes pinned on the bZ4X electric crossover. But the EV hasn't had the best start to its life with multiple recalls for issues including the wheels possibly coming off completely. The problem is serious enough for Toyota to advise owners not to drive the vehicles at all, but if you can't drive your car, how do you get around? To compensate, Toyota is making available multiple avenues for owners. In addition to providing a loaner vehicle and compensating fuel costs, the company will provide $5,000 credit towards your purchase, give you extra free charging, and extend your warranty. If all else fails, the Japanese brand will buy back your car.
Online car retailer Carvana recently had its trading license in Illinois suspended due to infractions relating to the licensing and registration of vehicles. But the company is now allowed to sell cars once more after a state judge reinstated the license after a motion for injunctive relief was filed. Judge Bonnie Wheaton sided with the dealer. However, the move may prove temporary, as further court proceedings are expected at the end of August.
Ahead of its imminent reveal on August 17, a source close to Porsche has told CarBuzz that the new 992-generation 911 GT3 RS will be getting a 4.2-liter flat-six engine developing more than 550 horsepower. If this rumor proves to be true, it's likely to be the newly-developed engine from the 911 GT3 R customer race car that was revealed last week. Porsche GT boss Andreas Preuninger had previously earmarked "around 500 horsepower" as being the ideal power output when talking about the aerodynamic and chassis improvements to the new GT3 RS, but a little more power never hurt anyone, right?
You thought the Bolt EV battery problems were a thing of the past? So did we. But that was before Chevy slashed prices on 2023 models, prompting the ire of buyers who bought 2022 models at $6,000 more. The American automaker is willing to reimburse those buyers that money, but the online agreement you have to sign waives all legal rights to claim against Chevrolet for any incidents specifically relating to battery problems with the EVs. Warranty claims would still be valid, but if your car went up in flames, you would not be allowed to pursue legal action, either privately or as part of a class action suit, against GM.