WASHINGTON: The United States will end preferential trade treatment for India from Wednesday, US President Donald Trump has announced, in a fresh economic headwind for New Delhi alongside slowing growth and record unemployment. India has been the single biggest beneficiary of the decades-old US Generalized System of Preferences program, allowing the country to export $5.7 billion worth of duty-free goods in 2017, according to figures from US Congress. Trump said in a statement issued late Friday that he wanted greater access for US goods to the giant South Asian nation. “I have determined that India has not assured the United States that India will provide equitable and reasonable access to its markets,” Trump said. “Accordingly, it is appropriate to terminate India’s designation as a beneficiary developing country.” Trump announced in March that he would be ending the preferential trade accord with India, but did not give a date. Washington has sought to make India a closer diplomatic ally, but has long complained about limited access to the huge market of 1.3 billion people. The US had a $26.7 billion trade deficit with India in 2017-2018. The announcement is the latest headwind to threaten the Hindu nationalist government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was re-elected to his second term in a landslide just weeks ago after campaigning partly on his record as an economic reformer. Official figures released Friday showed that India’s growth slowed for the third straight quarter to 5.8% in January-March, while unemployment hit a 45-year high in 2018. The Indian government made no immediate comment on Washington’s move, but media reports said New Delhi was considering higher import duties on more than 20 US goods including agricultural produce and chemicals. Indian commerce secretary Anup Wadahan played down the move to end the country’s GSP status in March, saying that preferential trade accounted for a fraction of its nearly $80 million in annual exports to the US.
Now, several times before I have decried the repetitive nature of Car Clinic. It really does get under one’s skin when one is asked the same question in the same grammar using the exact same vocabulary used by someone else a week earlier. What is this, a personalised answering service? I think not. I have a solution: I’ll do my own archiving, in hard copy format, and sell it as an annual automotive almanac. So those that didn’t pay attention the first time round will have to pay something else to get their issues addressed (again). This should kill the instant replay scenario that has persisted in my weekly correspondence; and it should have the added bonus of lining my uncomfortably shallow pockets. Just to spice things up, I intend to archive the raw, unedited versions of my write-ups just to justify the sales and not make it too punitive for the unwittingly forgetful or the willfully aloof.
Even though the Supra started out as a blue collar sports car, it has now reached legendary status accompanied by equally legendary car prices. Tuners loved the Supra because it had a twin-turbocharged inline-six that could be heavily tuned to produce more power. We have picked a pair of BMWs that each come with twin-turbo inline six engines. The E90 335i produced 320 hp from a twin-turbocharged N54 engine. The 3 Series coupe eventually became the 4 Series, which came with a 300-hp N55 twin-scroll turbo engine. Both could be had with a six-speed manual transmission, and both can be found for under $40,000 , which is less than a low mileage Supra.
The recall covers certain Toyota Prius and Lexus RX and NX SUVs. Also covered are some Toyota Alphard, Vellfire, Sienta, Noah, Voxy, Esquire, Probox, Succeed, Corolla, Highlander, Levin and Hilux models. All were produced from May of 2015 to March of 2016.
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First Amendment: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
Although the Sequoia offers some characteristics important to full-size SUV buyers (number of seats, a V-8 and more than 7,000 pounds of towing capacity), there are a few places where the Sequoia falls short (interior design and fuel economy). Overall ride quality, even in a Platinum with adaptive shocks and a sophisticated load-leveling rear air suspension system, is still shy of the segment stalwart Chevy Tahoe or the all-new Ford Expedition. And considering that the Sequoia has not benefitted from any significant chassis changes in almost a decade, it’s long overdue for more than just a refresh to better compete in its class.
On the outside, there are not many differences between the 2017 and 2018 X3. The 2018 model is a couple of inches longer and a half-inch wider. The added length appears to be between the axles, as the wheelbase is 2.2in (5.6cm) longer this time around. The model we tested, the X3 xDrive30i, sports a 2.0L 248hp (185KW) turbocharged, inline four-cylinder engine capable of 258lb-ft (350Nm) of torque. If the four-banger isn’t enough for you, you can upgrade to the M40i, which offers up a 3.0L, six-cylinder engine with 355hp (265KW) and 369lb-ft (500Nm) of torque. There’s an eight-speed transmission that responds differently depending on driving mode—and paddle shifters if you want to go the manual route.
More interesting for gearheads is the future performance-car concept BMW showed reporters. It would be powered by three electric motors, one at the front axle and two at the rear, each outputting upward of 268 hp, for a total of at least 800 hp. It could accelerate to 100 km/h in less than three seconds, and would have a range of up to 700 km. With DC fast charging, adding 100 km of range would take only 10 minutes.
It’s nearly sinful that BMW charges $300 for Apple CarPlay integration when the feature is standard on numerous nonluxury vehicles (let alone BMW’s plan to charge an annual subscription fee come 2019). The M40i does include a stitched, faux-leather wrap for the dashboard; power front sport seats; three-zone automatic climate control; adaptive, full-LED headlights; and an M40i-specific body kit. Our loaded test car added Apple CarPlay, a $500 wireless phone charger, a $900 Driving Assistance package (blind-spot monitoring and lane-departure warning), a $2950 Premium package (navigation, a head-up display, and a heated steering wheel), plus $350 for heated front and rear seats, and a $2550 Executive package (gesture-based infotainment controls, a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster, a self-parking system, and a 360-degree parking camera). Toss in the aforementioned adaptive suspension and bigger wheels, plus $550 Phytonic Blue paint, and the total came to $65,245. That counts as reasonable in this class these days. You can take a Porsche Macan to $100K and beyond, after all.