This is the Morning Shift, our one-stop daily roundup of all the auto news that's actually important — all in one place at 9:00 AM. Or, you could spend all day waiting for other sites to parcel it out to you one story at a time. Isn't your time more important?
1st Gear: Honda's Got The Beat, They Got The Beat, Yeah...
Honda will lift the sheet off a new electric sports-car concept at the 2011 Tokyo Auto Show. All it's called now is the Small Sports EV, and all we know is it's an open-top two-seater designed to be both eco- and fun-friendly. Of course they've said this before with the Honda Insight, and since all we know now is that it looks sort of like a drop-top version of the Insight, it's not really shootin' any wind up my skirt. But, some believe that, if it makes production, this could turn into a modern-day version of the Beat, Honda's midengine 660cc sports car sold in Japan in the 1990s. We'll believe that when we see it.
2nd Gear: 2013 Cadillac XTS Gets Cloth Dropped Officially
After yesterday's leak of the 2013 Cadillac XTS luxury sedan by Caddy's own website (first seen right here), GM's dropped the cloth officially, releasing a high-res version of the same image along with news it'll debut at next week's 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show. We just want to see the rear end, but for the moment, we're just happy something more in line with the rest of the Caddy lineup is replacing the DTS and STS.
3rd Gear: Chevy Blazes A New Trail, Officially
Chevrolet's new midsize sport utility vehicle, the TrailBlazer, which you also saw first here yesterday, made its global debut at the opening of the Dubai International Motor Show. The seven-seat show vehicle previews Chevrolet's latest SUV offering, which will be sold around the world, beginning with Thailand in early 2012. And by "around the world" we also mean "probably not here."
4th Gear: Jaguar Gets Two New Option Packs For XJ
Jaguar has revealed a pair of option packs for the XJ. The first, the Sport Pack, adds interior and exterior visual tweaks, while the Speed Pack lifts the electronic limiter on the supercharged model, allowing it to hit 174mph. Not too shabby if you ask us.
5th Gear: New Ford Police Cars To Pace Nascar Race
The 2013 Ford Police Interceptor Utility and Sedan will serve as the pace cars for this year's Ford Championship Weekend Nascar races at Homestead Miami Speedway Nov. 18-20. Because if there's one thing police officers love — it's Nascar.
6th Gear: Mitt Romney's Clunker Of A Debate Claim On Carmakers
Mitt Romney's claim that President Barack Obama "gave GM" to the United Auto Workers stood as one of the overstatements of the night Wednesday when Republican presidential candidates grappled with the economy in their latest debate. As the Chicago Tribune points out: "That's not what happened in the bailout. A trust owned by the United Auto Workers received a 17.5 percent ownership stake in GM to help that trust pay for its retirees' health care. That stake has declined since then, after the company went public in November 2010. The trust now owns about 10 percent of General Motors. That's much smaller than the government's stake of about 30 percent, and it doesn't support the notion that the government "gave" the company to the union."
⏎ GM Investors Are Missing The Point. [Forbes]
⏎ No lead is safe in Top Fuel, Funny Car entering NHRA finale. [USA Today]
⏎ Ohio tax incentives to help Chrysler hire, retain workers in Toledo. [Detroit Free Press]
⏎ New Kia Ray city car revealed. [Autocar]
⏎ Toyota to run OT next week. [Detroit Free Press]
⏎ Daimler confirms sale of 7.5% EADS stake. [Detroit News]
⏎ HBH Releases New Images Of Mid-Engine Aston Martin Bulldog GT. [Motor Authority]
⏎ Chrysler Drops Dual-Clutch Transmission Plans for 2012. [The Car Connection]
⏎ Running on Natural Gas, Magnolia Special Roadster Completes Cross-Country Drive. [New York Times]
Today in Automotive History:
On this day in 1903, the patent office awards U.S. Patent No. 743,801 to a Birmingham, Alabama woman named Mary Anderson for her "window cleaning device for electric cars and other vehicles to remove snow, ice or sleet from the window." When she received her patent, Anderson tried to sell it to a Canadian manufacturing firm, but the company refused: The device had no practical value, it said, and so was not worth any money. Though mechanical windshield wipers were standard equipment in passenger cars by around 1913, Anderson never profited from the invention. [History]
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