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 parse it out to you one story at a time. Isn't your time more important?
1st Gear: Uh Oh, Ford Has Hyundai/Kia Syndrome
This one hurts. The Ford C-Max had been advertised as having 47 MPG highway/city/combined mileage, thus besting the Toyota Prius. It's something they brag about. A LOT.
Yet, as Automotive News reports, the automaker had to revise the fuel economy down to 43 MPG combined, 45 MPG city, and 40 MPG highway.
That's better than the Prius V still, but that's still awful for them.
In response, Ford offered everyone who bought one $550, and everyone who leased one will get $325.
Ford blamed "anomalies" in EPA testing methods for hybrids, which is possibly true but also sort of hilarious misleading sounding.
2nd Gear: Lincoln Thinks It Makes Scotch Now
Right now it's like 5 AM on the West Coast and I'm a little hungover after a night of drinking 15-year-old Macallan at the Bentley party (while more than a few of the other journos loudly went for the 18-year-old Highland Park, blindly assuming older is better). It's something Bentley can get away with, because Bentley.
Can Lincoln get away with an Ultra-Premium label? I mean, how nice can you make an Ford Fusion?
Ford's debuting the Lincoln Black Label here at Pebble Beach; an upscale trim level that will be the creme de la mediocre across the Lincoln line. First up is the Lincoln MKZ, because the Lincoln MKZ is the only car that Lincoln admits that it still makes.
Think rich chocolatey interiors with vibrant colors and nicer materials.
It'll surely do great in China. Because China.
3rd Gear: The Super GT Lexus LF-CC Is Kind Of Hot
Japanese Super GT Series cars are the insane, manga-like versions of road cars (look at what they did to a Corolla), so I'm not at all surprised the LF-CC car is reasonably batty.
It's based on the Lexus LF-CC Concept, which is a kind of weird thing to base a race car on. Isn't usually a production version?
Welcome to Super GT.
4th Gear: Hey, Hey, Hey… GM Is Not Leaving Australia
GM's fist-pumping Mark Reuss spent a lot of time working in Australia. This explains a lot. Things are not going well for GM Australia, with a higher Australian dollar and weaker demand causing the company to pull back there.
Nevertheless, Reuss says they still want to keep some shrimp on some barbies (did I mention the scotch? Some of these jokes are going to be bad).
“We work with those unions really well and effectively there to have a viable manufacturing base and that’s what we’ve done for a long time, and so I don’t see that changing,” Reuss told reporters at a student internship program at the University of Detroit Mercy.
5th Gear: China Wants To Scrutinize Your Cars, World
Yeah, China isn't happy with shit getting expensive in China and is probing whether or not companies are illegally working to drive up price.
This scrutiny extends to cars reports The Wall Street Journal in this interesting piece.
Officials also are looking at prices of foreign-branded cars. Luo Lei, a deputy secretary-general for the China Automobile Dealers Association, said Wednesday that officials at the National Development and Reform Commission have asked the association to collect data on the prices of foreign cars. "The NDRC is checking price information in a variety of industries, and the auto sector is just one of the industries," Mr. Luo said. It wasn't clear if the commission's inquiry would result in a full probe.
If only there was an even cheaper company China could outsource its labor to in order to get their cars.
Reverse: White Lines...
After close to 30 hours of deliberation, a jury of six men and six women unanimously acquits the former automaker John Z. DeLorean of eight counts of drug trafficking in Los Angeles, California, on this day in 1984.
Neutral: Lincoln Black-Series? How expensive can you make a Fusion before no one buys it?