AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreCars made by U.S. automakers topped imports in quality ratings for the first time, according to J.D. Power, with Ford leading the way in pushing domestics past imports. Domestic auto brands, as a whole, have demonstrated higher initial quality than import brands, according to the 2010 U.S. Initial Quality Study (IQS) released today by J.D. Power and Associates. The study has been conducted annually for the past 24 years. Overall, the industry average for initial quality is 109 problems per 100 vehicles (PP100) in 2010. However, initial quality for domestic brands as a whole has improved by 4 PP100 in 2010 to an average of 108 PP100-slightly better than the initial quality of import brands, which averages 109 PP100 in 2010. Substantial improvements by many domestic models-including the Ford Focus, Ram 1500 LD and Buick Enclave-drive the overall improvement of domestic automakers in 2010. In particular, initial quality of Ford models has improved steadily for the past nine years. In addition, as a corporation, Ford Motor Company (including Volvo) has 12 models that rank within the top three in their respective segments in 2010-more than any other corporation. General Motors Company has 10 models that rank within the top three in their segments. Initial quality performance demonstrated by U.S. brands in 2010 contrasts sharply with consumer sentiment from one year ago. According to data collected by the J.D. Power Web Intelligence Division between May and July 2009, much of the online consumer discussion about automotive quality centered around the difficulties U.S. automakers were facing, and perceptions that these problems were largely caused by poor product quality. “Domestic automakers have made impressive strides in steadily improving vehicle quality, particularly since 2007,” said David Sargent, vice president of global vehicle research at J.D. Power and Associates. “This year may mark a key turning point for U.S. brands as they continue to fight the battle against lingering negative perceptions of their quality. However, there is still a long road ahead, and domestic manufacturers need to consistently prove to consumers that they can produce models with quality that equals or beats that of the import brands. Achieving quality comparability is the first half of the battle; convincing consumers-particularly import buyers-that they have done this is the second half.” Initial quality of new models and major redesigns continues to improve in 2010, led by new launches from Ford, Honda, Lexus, Mercedes-Benz and Porsche. The all-new Honda Accord Crosstour and the redesigned Ford Mustang, Ford Taurus and Lexus GX 460 each rank highest in initial quality in their respective segments. The Ford Fusion, Mercedes-Benz E-Class Coupe and Sedan and Porsche Panamera also launch with notably high initial quality levels. Historically, newly launched models have incurred substantially more quality problems than carryover models, on average. However, more than one-half of all models launched during the 2010 model year perform better than average. (JD Power press release, via NPR News) AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore
Production art for “Waitress”(Provided by Boneau/Bryan-Brown) View Comments Waitress is headed to London. The Tony-nominated musical with an original score by Grammy-nommed songwriter Sara Bareilles and a book by Jessie Nelson will arrive at the West End’s Adelphi Theatre in the spring of 2019, with exact dates to come. Tony winner Diane Paulus will repeat her work as director, with Lorin Latarro as choreographer.Bareilles said, “I cannot contain my excitement that we will be bringing Waitress to the West End! This is a dream come true! And I must say, to be hosted in a theater co-owned by Andrew Lloyd Webber and the Nederlander Group makes this very sweet moment even sweeter. We are so proud of this beautiful show, and can’t wait to share the story of Jenna with a whole new audience and welcome them into the world of Waitress with open arms and plenty of pie.”Paulus said, “I am absolutely thrilled that Waitress is coming to the beautiful Adelphi Theatre! It is a dream come true to share this musical with London audiences.”Based on the 2007 motion picture written by Adrienne Shelly, Waitress tells the story of Jenna, an expert pie maker in a small town, who dreams of a way out of her loveless marriage. A baking contest in a nearby county and the town’s new doctor may offer her a chance at a new life, while her fellow waitresses offer their own recipes to happiness. But Jenna must find the courage and strength within herself to rebuild her life.Casting and additional creative team for the West End bow of Waitress will be announced at a later date.
Held in London last week, the MEPC 73 meetings had the aim of ironing out the details relating to the Marpol Annex VI regulation, which is due to come into effect on January 1, 2020, cutting the allowable sulphur content in marine fuel from 3.5 percent to 0.5 percent.The complementary Marpol amendment will prohibit the carriage of non-compliant fuel oil for combustion purposes for propulsion or operation on board a ship – unless the ship has an exhaust gas cleaning system fitted. The system, also known as a scrubber, is accepted by flag states as an alternative means to meet the sulphur limit requirement.The complementary amendment is expected to enter into force on March 1, 2020 and is intended to be an additional measure to support the consistent implementation and compliance with the 0.5 percent sulphur cap. www.imo.org
AMPAS(LOS ANGELES) — Remember that Chris Rock Oscars bit in 2016 where Rock, that year’s host, quizzed people on the street as to whether or not they’d seen that year’s Academy Award-nominated movies? And it turned out that many people hadn’t even heard of the movies in question, let alone seen them? Well, that may soon change.Perhaps as a reaction to last year’s ratings for the 90th annual Academy Awards, which were the lowest ever, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences tweeted today that a new category is “being designed around achievement in popular film.”What’s more, the ceremony’s 2020 show will air earlier in the year: February 9; by comparison, the 2019 show will be held on February 24.The most welcome piece of news, though, is that the Academy says it will take steps to battle the show’s tendency to run long — way too long, in many cases — and create a “more globally accessible, three-hour telecast.”Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.