Of moto-news, sorta. No big stories, except in the minds of the PR hucksters hawking them, so here’s a trayful of tasty updates…

Fiat is going to buy GM, too?. Not exactly fresh off their aquisition (or was it an adoption?) of Chrysler, The Detroit Freep (www.detnews.com, always a good source) reports that Fiat’s CEO wants to add GM to their collection of misfit brands. They’ve already badge engineered the Lancia Voyager minivan, so I’m sure the Alfa Beretta and Cadillac Cirrus ad nauseum are well within their abilities. Fortunately antitrust laws will likely protect Ram, Chevy, and GMC trucks from becoming one, sparing us from the Sierra Bighorn.

Fall motorcycle price falls: Never shop for a new bike until after August at least- First Guzzi gave us $3000 rebates on $9000 V7 750 twins, now Suzuki and Yamaha are offering up to $2000 rebates on non current big ‘Stroms and Super Teneres. Stacked on top of previous dealer kickbacks, the result is new Super Teneres going out the door for not just less than $10k’ but less than $9k if you shop around the country a bit. With the world economy slowing and U.S. bike sales with the exception of poseur platforms BMW and HOG(NYSE) still selling only half the numbers they did pre-recession, expect more bargains.

Some organizations get new media, some fear it: The folks who put on the Work Truck Show are great, welcoming even this small market blogger to their event and providing a steady news stream when a spring blizzard kept me from making their show. The rail industry groups sponsoring the big rail equipment show in Minneapolis next month are another matter, outright banning bloggers from their event. ‘Spose I’ve got enough safety vests and such to pass myself off as a rail and get in anyway, but it starts the same weekend as the BMWRA rally and I’ll be there instead. Memo to the keepers of railroad media relations: Just because a few overly green bloggers have been raking you over the coals for hauling oil you couldn’t legally refuse anyway, doesn’t mean all us bloggers are tree-hugging hippies that will try to pass off a ballast cleaner as an environmental disaster if we’re allowed to see one. This and many other bloggers have been more than fair to the railroads and even overtly pro-rail.

Is the Ranger returning to America? So sayeth the rumors coming out of the Ford-UAW contract negotiations. Could be a bargaining chip, but more likely for real… The hottest housing on the market is apartments, condos, and townhouses, which tend not to have F150 sized garages. And with no basements or attics to stash stuff, anything with wheels will have to share those downsized garages. And have you noticed how small parking spaces have gotten? No wonder GM can’t keep up with the demand for their back from the dead mid sized pickups, while Toyota keeps a plant busy cranking out it’s aging Tacoma which is outselling it’s full sized Tundra. Oh, and Jeep is shopping around a Wrangler pickup on the auto show circuit… Which will probably make it into mass production if Fiat doesn’t buy GM first.

Eurotrucks coming to America?. Besides the Volvo cabovers “testing” in Canada, rumors persist that Scania will return or VW will scoop up Navistar which is already building MAN engines under license. And with MAN opening a new cab paint line despite owner VW recently adding Scania to their marque collection, fat chance VW will be able to rationalize both companies cab and powertrain ranges and close any plants. With other major markets (read China) losing steam, VW will be looking for somewhere to sell all that production capacity… North America, perhaps?

Finally, I’m now “comparison testing” the BMW motorcycle clubs, BMWMOA vs. BMWRA. Over two months after dutifully paying my dues, I have yet to receive a copy of MOA’s glossy magazine. RA: The other day I joined to take advantage of the rally “bundle” discount and was worried when the website didn’t give me a member number to get the discount. A quick call to the RA and a friendly person gave me a number and I got the discount. The differences between the clubs are clear: At BMWRA it’s “us”, at BMWMOA it’s “us” vs. “them” that run the club!

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