Thursday, April 26, 2018
Business

Lexus rolls out sport coupe hybrid at North American International Auto Show

DETROIT — Lexus unveiled a sleek, powerful concept sport coupe Monday that the luxury brand said offers a look at how its future offerings might be designed. • The two-door, four-seat LF-LC hybrid, which features an expansive glass roof, was rolled out at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, which holds media previews this week and opens to the public on Saturday. The Lexus concept features tail lamps inspired by the look of jet airplane afterburners. Lexus expects the LF-LC would kick out more than 500 horsepower. • "We wanted this to be a gorgeous car, but we also wanted everything to be functional with a focus on the driver," said Lexus general manager Mark Templin. • The LF-LC is packed with technology, including touch-screen devices in the center console and on the doors as well as two 12.3-inch LCD display screens. • The luxury arm of Toyota Motor Corp. said there are currently no plans to produce the LF-LC.

Car and truck of the year awards

The Hyundai Elantra has won the North American Car of the Year award, while the Land Rover Range Rover Evoque won the North American Truck of the Year.

Fifty automotive journalists voted on the winning vehicles from a group of finalists. Car finalists included the Ford Focus, Hyundai Elantra and Volkswagen Passat. Truck finalists were the BMW X3, Honda CR-V and the Land Rover Range Rover Evoque.

Smart unveils itty-bitty pickup truck

Calling it the perfect vehicle for an urban society, Smart on Monday unveiled the "for-us," its tiny take on the classic U.S. pickup truck.

Smart, a division of Germany's Daimler AG, said the concept vehicle is so small that it could fit in the bed of a traditional pickup and be barely noticed. At the same time, it provides enough room for two people to sit comfortably. The truck's cargo bed hold spaces to charge the front wheels of two electric bicycles.

GM could be back in the saddle again

General Motors is on track to retake the title of world's top-selling automaker, riding strong sales in the U.S. and China to beat Volkswagen and Toyota.

GM, which lost the crown to Toyota in 2008 after holding it for more than seven decades, won't release global sales numbers until later this month, but it's on pace to finish 2011 at about 9 million cars and trucks, at least 800,000 more than its German and Japanese rivals.

 
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Duke Energy announces new Florida leadership

Duke Energy announces new Florida leadership

ST. PETERSBURG — The head of Duke Energy Florida is leaving his post to take a new role with the utility’s parent company June 1, the company announced on Wednesday. Harry Sideris, 47, was appointed this week to serve as vice president a...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Yelp search results reflected racist stereotype that Asian American restaurants serve cat and dog

Yelp search results reflected racist stereotype that Asian American restaurants serve cat and dog

A strange thing happened when typing "dog menu" into the restaurant ratings website and app Yelp. It automatically generated suggested searches. There were dog massage, hot dogs, pet groomers. Also: "dog meat." But it got more disturbing. Take Yelp...
Published: 04/25/18
As more emotional support animals fly on U.S. airlines, Congress eyes new ways to tighten the leash

As more emotional support animals fly on U.S. airlines, Congress eyes new ways to tighten the leash

WASHINGTON — With hundreds of thousands of emotional support animals taking to the skies on U.S. airlines, Congress may start pulling a tighter leash.Two new legislative options emerged this week to address a hairy issue for American Airlines, Southw...
Published: 04/25/18

Comcast challenges Murdoch with rival bid for U.K.-based Sky

LONDON — U.S. media giant Comcast on Wednesday offered $30.7 billion for Sky PLC, topping a bid from Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox and setting up a bidding war for Britain’s biggest satellite TV company.Comcast said it would pay approximately $17...
Published: 04/25/18
Sprouts Farmers Market to open new store in Pasco County

Sprouts Farmers Market to open new store in Pasco County

TRINITY — Pasco County will be getting its first Sprouts Farmers Market, the organic grocery chain announced Wednesday. The new store will open at the Village at Mitchell Ranch on State Road 54 and Little Road. Officials with the speciality st...
Published: 04/25/18
Circle K launching own gas at eight Hillsborough locations

Circle K launching own gas at eight Hillsborough locations

TAMPA — Circle K is converting the gas station portion of eight of its Hillsborough locations to Circle K fuel. Previously, the fuel was provided by other brands, such as Shell. The new Circle K branding also brings with it the Canadian-owned conveni...
Published: 04/25/18
Florida leads other hurricane-prone states in quality of its building codes

Florida leads other hurricane-prone states in quality of its building codes

Florida has the strongest residential building codes among 18 coastal states, according to a new study by the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety. Florida’s rating is 95, almost three times higher than lowest-ranked Texas. Other states wit...
Published: 04/25/18
Study: Tampa Bay homes in once ‘redlined’ neighborhoods worth half those in other areas

Study: Tampa Bay homes in once ‘redlined’ neighborhoods worth half those in other areas

Times staffRedlining’ — banks’ refusal to make mortgage loans in certain areas — still has a huge effect on housing values even though the practice was banned 50 years ago. According to Zillow, a Tampa Bay house in a once-redlined area is worth less ...
Published: 04/25/18
Tex-Mex chain Chuy’s opens first Tampa restaurant, Nebraska Mini-Mart grab-and-go coming soon

Tex-Mex chain Chuy’s opens first Tampa restaurant, Nebraska Mini-Mart grab-and-go coming soon

NOW OPEN: TEX-MEX CHAIN CHUY’SThe Austin, Texas-based Tex-Mex chain Chuy’s opened its first Tampa restaurant on Tuesday, giving away free Chuy’s for two for a year to the first 50 customers. I know, we missed it, it’s a bummer, but we can still visit...
Published: 04/25/18
Clearwater looks to move out of City Hall to speed up Imagine Clearwater waterfront redevelopment

Clearwater looks to move out of City Hall to speed up Imagine Clearwater waterfront redevelopment

CLEARWATER — Elected officials have talked about relocating City Hall from the downtown bluff for a good 30 years. Now there’s a jolt of urgency to actually do it.Voters backed a referendum in November that essentially greenlighted the $55 million re...
Published: 04/25/18