This is The Morning Shift, our one-stop daily roundup of all the auto news that's actually important — all in one place at 9:30 AM. Or, you could spend all day waiting for other sites to parse it out to you one story at a time. Isn't your time more important?
1st Gear: Enter The Next Qoros
The Qoros 3 was the first Chinese car to score five-stars in European crash testing and one of the first Chinese cars to sell outside of China with a modern, non-derivative exterior.
You can thank a former Mini designer for the exterior design, and you can thank a curious Sino-Israeli corporation for creating the new car brand.
While it's still in only limited release in Europe, the Qoros 3 is a car that likely wouldn't be at the top of your list but it's at least something you'd consider renting for a long weekend. Now Qoros has announced they'll be showing a Qoros 3-derivative production model (probably a Qoros Estate like the concept shown above) at the upcoming Geneva Motor Show.
2nd Gear: Audi Plans To Invest $30 Billion To Beat BMW
When Ze Germans fight the world, we all tend to lose. When Ze Germans fight one another, we all win. Audi is the second biggest luxury carmaker, but Bloomberg reports that they're going to spend $30.3 billion to best BMW to become the world's largest luxury/premium brand.
How are they going to do that? More models (i.e. more crossover/suvs) and more efficient tech (electric motors and lightweight design). There's also probably some money going to China.
Mercedes is in the middle of such a product overhaul and it appears to be working, while BMW is already introducing more variations of models than we can keep track of ( theM4 Gran Coupe Xdrive 3s is surely coming)
3rd Gear: Just Go Buy A Car
Every automaker wants to move as much of their inventory as they can by the end of the year as they try to top their own records so if you've been on the fence it's time to pull that post out of your ass and get into a dealership. We tend to promote used cars around here, but some automakers promise deals so great it should take care of some of that depreciation.
Brent Snavely breaks down a few of them this morning:
Chrysler is touting its Big Finish event, Ford is telling customers to Dream Big, Toyota has its Toyotathon sales event, and Hyundai is pushing its Sonata midsize sedan with Hyundai Holidays. Even BMW has its Happier New Year Event, to counter Mercedes-Benz's Winter Event.
The best deal? Probably Honda, which is offering dealers about $3K for each car over their previous December sales.
4th Gear: Daimler Not Liable For Allegedly Helping Continue Apartheid
While there's some evidence that companies like Daimler sold products to security forces in South Africa that used them to commit race-based crimes, a judge in New York ruled that the German companies couldn't be sued because, as Reuters reports, the plaintiffs in the case couldn't prove the case "touch and concern the United States with sufficient force" to justify using a law from the 1780s.
But what of Ford and IBM, who are also named?
They're not so lucky as the judge refused to dismiss charges against them.
5th Gear: The Power Of The Dyno
Proud former Jalopnik intern Eric Tingwall (ok, maybe not proud, I can never tell with that guy) has a great breakdown of the modern dynamometer and its role in car culture over at Car And Driver I definitely recommend reading.
I mean, without the modern dyno we wouldn't have the modern DYNO FAIL!
Reverse: Why Drifting Was Unpopular In The '40s
On this day in 1941, the federal Office of Price Administration initiates its first rationing program in support of the American effort in World War II: It mandates that from that day on, no driver will be permitted to own more than five automobile tires.
Neutral: Would You Buy/Rent/Lease/Gift A Qoros 3? The Chinese have
Photo Credit: Getty Images