Episode 87 – Bridges and Bentley’s

Welcome to the auto podcast that is pondering the question… Do you still want an EV?

On this episode of Throwin’ Wrenches…  

  • EV’s…  Are they still hot?   
  • Eric buys a Bentley. 
  • Rivian has some new ideas

All that and more on This episode of Throwin’ Wrenches. 

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  • Fort’s Toyota of Pekin

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  • Trailer antics for the eclipse
  • Celica title in hand
  • Celica for the weekend.


  • In the home stretch for the basement remodel. Most of it anyway.
  • Fixed brake lights on my ‘55 Plymouth, and got the Fury fired up again.
  • Goal is to drive that more this summer and get the ‘55 Caddy going once I wrap this basement stuff. I’m on a roll, baby! 



BMW Sees Top-End EVs Driving Profit Even as Demand Cools

BMW AG said its top-end electric vehicles like the 7-Series sedans, X7 and Rolls Royce Spectre will drive profit this year, even as faltering global demand weighs on broader EV sales. The German luxury-car maker expects its priciest models to be key contributors to a 8% to 10% margin for its automotive segment, in line with its long-term target. BMW sees overall sales increasing slightly.

Source: Bloomberg 

Nissan Returns to Sales Playbook to Move Old Rogue Supply

Nissan has a Rogue problem — and it’s turning to an old playbook to fix it. Even as 2024 Rogues are dropped off at Nissan stores this month, Edmunds data shows that the brand’s dealerships have as many as 24,000 previous model-year crossovers on their lots. Nissan has a “big time” issue with its bestseller, said a retailer, one of a half-dozen interviewed by Automotive News. According to a memo obtained by Automotive News last week, Nissan is offering dealers $1,000 on each 2023 Rogue sold if they hit their March sales targets for the compact crossover, which vary by store. Dealers may count 2024 Rogue sales toward the goal, but the bonus is paid out only on last year’s models. If dealers miss the target by even one vehicle, they don’t get the bonus for any of them.

Source: Automotive News 

China EV push leaves zom­bie factor­ies in its wake

Plants geared to pet­rol engines are moth­balled as for­eign car­makers lose mar­ket share
Source: Financial Times

In 2017, Hyundai inves­ted $1.15bn in a new fact­ory in Chongqing, south-west­ern China, with the goal of reach­ing an annual out­put of 300,000 internal com­bus­tion engine cars. But six years later, the rapid switch by Chinese con­sumers to elec­tric vehicles has stalled sales, for­cing the car­maker to sell the fact­ory in Decem­ber for less than a quarter of the invest­ment value.

“The Chongqing plant con­tin­ued to be in the red and China’s auto mar­ket is grap­pling with over­sup­ply,” said Lee Hang-koo at the Jeon­buk Insti­tute of Auto­mot­ive Con­ver­gence Tech­no­logy, a South Korean research group. “No one was will­ing to buy the plant at a high price.”

That plant is one of the hun­dreds of zom­bie factor­ies that ana­lysts are pre­dict­ing over the next dec­ade in the Chinese car mar­ket, the world’s biggest across sales, pro­duc­tion and, since last year, exports. In 2023, China pro­duced 17.7mn internal com­bus­tion engine cars, a 37 per cent fall from its peak in 2017, accord­ing to data from Auto­mobil­ity, a Shang­hai con­sultancy.

While some older factor­ies will be repur­posed for plug-in hybrids or pure bat­tery elec­tric vehicles, oth­ers will never pro­duce another car, pos­ing a prob­lem for both for­eign and Chinese com­pan­ies.

Many car­makers in China, Russo said, ulti­mately faced two choices: “Leave the fact­ory moth­balled or crank out some volume and send it to Rus­sia, send it to Mex­ico.”

That’s right, China is now doing the same stuff other countries used to do to China.


GM, Ford Will Reroute Baltimore Shipments After Bridge Collapse

U.S. automakers General Motors and Ford will reroute affected shipments after a bridge collapse in the U.S. shuttered the Port of Baltimore, but the companies said on Tuesday the impact will be minimal. The Port of Baltimore is the busiest U.S. port for car shipments, handling at least 750,000 vehicles in 2023, according to data from the Maryland Port Administration. Motor vehicles and parts accounted for 42% of all Baltimore port imports.

Source: Reuters


The Biden administration moved Wednesday to throttle pollution from the nation’s cars and light trucks, imposing tailpipe emission limits so stringent they will compel automakers to rapidly boost sales of battery-electric and plug-in hybrid models. Though the near-term requirements were eased after pushback from automakers, the Environmental Protection Agency’s mandates would nevertheless require manufacturers to make a rapid shift toward zero-emission vehicles. The National Automobile Dealers Association said the regulation outpaces consumer demand, adding the group is “highly skeptical that consumers will adopt EVs anywhere near the levels required.”

Source: Bloomberg

Electric vehicle owners are noticing vehicle tires wearing faster than those on gasoline-powered vehicles, according to the J.D. Power 2024 U.S. Original Equipment Tire Customer Satisfaction Study. Findings from the study highlight EV owners having less satisfaction with the durability of their tires, expecting them to wear similar to gasoline-powered vehicle tires. However, EV tires naturally wear quicker because of greater vehicle weight and higher torque.

Source: Automotive News

Dealers See the Good and Bad Out of Unchanged Interest Rates

The average interest rate on auto loans for new vehicles was 7.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2023, up from 6.1 percent a year earlier, according to Experian. The average used-vehicle auto loan charged 11.9 percent, up from 10.4 percent a year earlier. Cox Automotive Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke told Automotive News anticipation of future rate cuts hurts today’s auto market.

Source: Automotive News 

Stellantis uses ‘mandatory remote work day’ to cut 400 white-collar jobs

Source: Yahoo! Finance

White-collar workers at Chrysler-parent Stellantis have reason to be nervous if they ever receive a company notice telling them it’s mandatory that they work remotely on a particular day.

That’s what happened to 400 or so of their colleagues on Thursday. They were informed via a notice that the next day the carmaker would be “holding important operational meetings that require specific attention and participation.”

“To ensure everyone can effectively participate,” the notice continued, “we have decided to implement a mandatory remote work day.” Employees, it indicated, were “expected to work from home unless otherwise instructed by your manager.” The Car Dealership Guy X account shared the notice on Thursday.

The workers in question were salaried, nonunion employees in technology and engineering in the U.S.

During the remote meeting on Friday, they were informed that they were being laid off.

The automaker—which counts Jeep, Ram, Chrysler, and Dodge among its brands—said in a statement: “As the auto industry continues to face unprecedented uncertainties and heightened competitive pressures around the world, Stellantis continues to make the appropriate structural decisions across the enterprise to improve efficiency and optimize our cost structure.”

At least they’re efficient. 

Moment of Musk

The price of dogecoin has doubled in the last month amid rumours that it could soon be integrated into Elon Musk’s X platform.

The tech billionaire, who is a vocal advocate of the meme-inspired cryptocurrency, has previously spoken of his plan to build an “everything app” that incorporates messaging, marketplaces and online payments.

On Monday, he shared an animation from X user DogeDesigner showing his former payments platform X merg

ing with the social media app he took over in 2022.

“The circle will be complete,” he commented.

Cars of the Weak



This 2010 Bentley Continental Flying Spur is powered by a twin-turbocharged 6.0-liter W12 that drives all four wheels through a six-speed automatic transaxle, and it is finished in Cypress Gray Metallic over beige leather. Equipment includes a Torsen center differential, 20″ twin-spoke wheels, a glass sunroof, bi-xenon headlights, soft-close doors, parking sensors, heated and ventilated front and rear seats, a rearview camera, a 12-speaker sound system, cruise control, four-zone automatic climate control, and infotainment with navigation. The seller purchased the car in December 2012 and has since added approximately 30k of the 39k indicated miles. This Flying Spur is now offered in California with the owner’s manual, a damage-free Carfax report, and a clean Hawaii title in the seller’s name.

I love this car for a couple of reasons…

Hawaii car.  When does that ever happen?

W12 engine.  6 liter.  Yes, please


39,000 miles

MSRP was 177,000 bucks.  

It qualifies for the additional 5% luxury tax  (20,000 extra in tax!)

Sold for 34,000!!!  

14 years old…  Thats 163K in depreciation…  Only $11,642 a year!

Or… Even better…  $4+ per mile.   (17 miles to COSTCO from my house…  Roundtrip…  136 bucks in depreciation… plus gas)



Daryl: 1947 Packard Custom Super Clipper Seven-Passenger Sedan – $42,500

Source: Facebook



This is a pretty rare and very beautiful 1947 Packard Custom Super Clipper Seven Passenger.  You don’t see these to often because they only made 1,790 of them!  This Packard was restored several years ago, but it still looks incredible!  The black acrylic enamel paint still shines beautifully.  The interior was completely restored as well using period correct fabrics and materials.  The 356 cu in. straight eight cylinder engine runs like a Swiss watch.  It was professionally rebuilt with only 500 miles on it currently.  The complete brake system was also completely rebuilt 500 miles ago.  The transmission is a three speed manual with electromatic overdrive, which was a pretty rare option.  The chrome and glass are in excellent condition with the front and rear bumpers also having the custom center bars.  It has the rare, four heater option and the front and rear radios as well!  It was retrofitted with a modern alternator (original generator included) and an electric fuel pump. Asking $42,500.

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