The mystery of the exploding sunroof

KELOWNA, B.C. — On a quiet stretch of the Coquihalla Highway, about 60 km outside of West Kelowna, the sun was shining on a blue-sky February afternoon when the roof of my BMW exploded. Kaboom. The glass sunroof disappeared into the air, a shattering of tempered pebbles drizzled down to the highway behind me. No …

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Toyota: excellence isn’t sexy, but it is endearing

Excellence is often a sideshow in a world increasingly captivated by ignorance and eccentricity, on the amusements of incompetence and the terrors of crisis. Consistency rarely grabs headlines. We are dreamers as a species. We embrace brashness and bluster. All this helps to explain why Toyota Motor is almost never gets attention of the chattering …

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Detroit’s car companies are in the early stages of a great crisis

Exactly a decade ago, Detroit’s automakers were in crisis as the broader world economy descended into chaos. There’s another crisis unfolding in Detroit now, but it’s not so obvious, even if it is just as real. And while the world’s economy is not yet out of control, there are alarm bells ringing from Beijing to …

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A revealing look at ultra-rich car buyers

Forbes pegs the number of billionaires at a record 2,208. Average net worth: $4.1 billion (all figures in U.S. dollars). Combined net worth: $9.1 trillion. The U.S. was the reported home to 585 billionaires, China in second place at 373. In June, Bloomberg said a Boston Consulting Group report found that millionaires and billionaires now …

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Without Carlos Ghosn, Nissan and Renault would have failed

In the fall of 1999, a young and very aggressive Brazilian-born, French-trained executive came to Tokyo with more bad news than any car company executive had ever delivered to the insular and pampered Japanese car business. Carlos Ghosn, a worldly engineer of Portuguese descent, who at the time spoke multiple languages, was there to fix …

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