What we're reading this morning about President Obama's next car, Fisker's new CEO and what happens when you rely on the government to put a check in the mail:
Fisker names former Chrysler chief to CEO post [LA Times] Henrik Fisker's eponymous car company has succeeded in putting the Fisker Karma on the road — but in most other measures, it's struggling, from getting federal loans pulled to answering quality complaints from customers. Today, the first sign of a shakeup arrived with the naming of former Chrysler chief Tom LaSorda as chief executive and Fisker's removal to executive chairman. LaSorda and Fisker expressed nothing but optimism about the company's future, which is exactly what you'd expect no matter what was going on inside.
Obama pledges to buy a Volt in five years [The Hill] In a stemwinder of a speech to the UAW political convention, President Barack Obama mocked Republicans who opposed his rescue of Detroit automakers and pledged that once he leaves office, he will buy a Chevrolet Volt. Cynics might say it's only fair since he's help pay for every one sold to date so far.
Bright Automotive closes up shop after failing to get fed loan money [Detroit News] This story is less about another automotive start-up failing than the politics behind it; the company claims that it was done in by a government bureaucracy which dangled loans from a $25 billion fund for advanced auto technology only to keep changing the terms — and now, with the program under heavy fire from Republicans, Bright's executives say the process has turned into a "debacle" with proposals that question whether the government ever meant to loan the money.
Jaguar reveals XF Sportbrake [Jaguar] This is a Jaguar XF sedan given a tasteful rear cargo compartment and tailgate to create what may be one of the sleekest, most graceful looking luxury wagons on the road. And since it is only 150 lbs. heavier than the aluminum XF, and more useful, and bound to mark anyone behind the wheel as a person of discerning taste, it will never roll upon these shores because Americans would rather buy Nissan Murano CrossCabriolets.