Ferrari Testa Rossa most expensive car ever, China car sales suck, and the Mercedes-Benz SLK55 AMG

1st Gear: This Is The Most Expensive Car Ever
As we reported Saturday evening, a 1957 Ferrari Testa Rossa prototype sold for $14.9 million at the Gooding auction in Pebble Beach, Calif., tonight. Adding in the buyers' premium, the final price is $16.39 million, setting a record for the most expensive car ever sold…

Ford pickups make a "Movement," Germany's burning things again, and Audi drops a new concept

1st Gear: Ford F-150 EcoBoost Pickups Make Their Own Movement
Ford's created a new Fiesta Movement-like challenge for the F-150 EcoBoost-powered pickup truck, kicking it off today on Facebook. Drivers in eight cities will put EcoBoost-equipped Ford F-150s in fuel efficiency challenge tests and community projects. So…

Chevy Volt interest waning, Saab pulls out of Frankfurt, and Chrysler's flappy-headed sales strategy

1st Gear: Are Buyers Losing Interest In Chevy Volt?
USA Today's Chris Woodyard reports this morning that interest in buying the $39,995 Chevy Volt plug-in car is starting to taper off, not only among "early adopters" but among other buyers, as well, reports CNW Marketing Research. Considering that the Volt has some of…

Will Power's double-barreled bird flip, GMC wins "Heavy Duty Hurt Locker," and Lincoln lacks product

1st Gear: Will Power's Double-Barreled Bird Flip
IndyCar Series driver Will Power was just a wee bit ticked off Sunday when race officials restarted late in the New Hampshire Motor Speedway race — with the track still wet. The result? A spin by Danica Patrick that took out several other drivers, including Power.…

SSC Tuatara still a mouthful, Mercedes building second shooting brake, and Laura Soave's still hot

1st Gear: This Is The Tuatara-ra-ra-ra-ra
Shelby SuperCars publicly dropped the cloth on the unfortunately-named SSC Tuatara for the press for the first time yesterday in Shanghai. In attendance was Jason Castriota, the designer behind not only this new SSC, but also the Stile Bertone Mantide, the P4/5 Pininfarina,…

Used luxury cars almost same price as new, Chrysler's 90-day no-payment plan, and GM's CEO makes not-so-brilliant stock buy

1st Gear: New BMWs Only Cost One Buck More Than Used
Record-high prices for used luxury automobiles are driving more buyers to new-car lots, according to Bloomberg this morning. BMW's 2011 3-Series compacts and M3 sedans now cost $34 more a month than one-year-old used models. General Motors Co.'s Chevrolet Corvette…

Mazda may kill the Wankel, America's feeling less gassy, and Suzuki's new "warm" hatch

1st Gear: Ward's Auto reports that after 44 years, the future of the rotary engine at Mazda, the last mass-market auto maker to produce the piston-less mill, is now in doubt. The engine has been offered on the Mazda RX-8 since its introduction for the '04 model year. But the sports car is being discontinued following…

Automakers slammed worse than market, Obama gets heavy on trucks, and Ford's electric kerfuffle

1st Gear: On a day when stocks on Wall Street plunged with their sixth-largest one-day point drop, the auto industry wasn't spared and, in some cases, fared worse than market indexes. Investors shed auto stocks as Standard & Poor's decision on Friday to downgrade the long-term U.S. credit rating, compounded with…

How Audi's doing it right, why Ghosn pulled out of Chrysler, and Ford's Farley apologizes for GM F-bomb

1st Gear: Bloomberg's reporting this morning how Audi plans to introduce its top-of-the line sports cars in the U.S. to enhance the brand's image and charge higher prices as it bids to narrow the gap with luxury-car leader BMW. Audi's 340-horsepower TT RS will go on sale in the U.S. next month, while the 78,000-euro…

Toyota profits hammered, OnStar can track your kids, and Ford trucks may actually lead to fiery death

1st Gear: Toyota reported a quarterly operating loss today due to Japan's biggest earthquake on record hammering production and the yen's rise hit profits on exports. The automaker made an operating loss of 108 billion yen ($1.4 billion) in the April-June quarter, compared with a 211.7 billion yen profit a year…

Japanese auto sales predictably plummet, Ford drops the price of Sync, and Audi loses itself with Eminem

1st Gear: Toyota and Nissan, Japan's two biggest automakers, led a 27.6% drop in domestic vehicle sales, the 11th straight monthly decline, after the nation's March 11 earthquake disrupted production. Sales of cars, trucks and buses, excluding minicars, fell to 241,472 vehicles in July, the Japan Automobile Dealers…