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Best of the Blogs, Transportation: Volkswagen Buys Out Porsche as German Auto Saga Enters Final Act


Plus, Fiat cool on rumors of Chrysler purchase.

MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL This column highlights the most interesting and useful financial commentary on transportation from around the Web every Thursday.

Link: VW-Porsche Deal Moves to the End Game
"The acquisition of Porsche's (POAHY) sports car business by Volkswagen (VOW.DE) has moved into its final stages with agreement by VW to buy the 50.1% stake it doesn't already own for EUR4.46bn (US$5.6bn).

"The move ends a long-running saga which first saw Porsche Automotive Holdings try to envelope its much bigger rival before the onset of economic crisis turned the whole deal on its head."

The Wall Street Journal: Driver's Seat
Link: Fiat Could Buy Out Chrysler But Says it Won't - Yet
"Italy's Fiat SpA (F.MI) has the cash to buy the rest of Chrysler Group LLC it doesn't already own, but it won't do it any time soon, the head of both car makers said on Tuesday, adding that the US auto maker was on its way to making about $3 billion in operating profit in 2012 after having already achieved more than half of its sales target for the year.

"'Fiat has the cash resources to carry out the completion of the acquisition of Chrysler,' Sergio Marchionne said at a Fiat car launch in this northwestern Italian city. 'We can do this at anytime. I don't think the conditions are there for us to do it now.'"

Link: US Airways: "No Urgency to Merge"
"US Airways Group (LCC) is in no rush to merge with bankrupt American Airlines (AAMRQ) and expects its rival to defer any review of a possible deal now that it has asked a judge for more time to formulate an exit plan on its own.

"'That delay is fine by us - there is certainty no urgency to merge,' US Airways' chief executive, Doug Parker, said in a note to employees on Wednesday."

The Cranky Flier
Link: Virgin America Posts Terrible First Quarter Loss, Has One Year to Prove Itself
"Here we are in July and believe it or not, I haven't written an article focusing on Virgin America here since last year. I guess it's because the airline seemed to be on autopilot. It kept adding new routes and posting losses. So what's changed? Nothing. Except the fact that the recently released first quarter earnings were really bad, even by Virgin America's usual standards. This next year is going to be crucial for the airline as growth finally, mercifully slows for a brief time. This is the airline's chance to prove that growth really is the only reason it isn't making money."

Link: For Toyota's Lexus It's Deja Vu: Floor Mat Problem Prompts Recall
"Late last week NHTSA issued this statement about Toyota's (TM) 2010 Lexus RX 350 and RX 450 H models, approximately 154,000 vehicles:

"'After carefully reviewing the data, including consumer complaints and information provided by the manufacturer, NHTSA requested that Toyota conduct an immediate recall of the aforementioned Lexus vehicles for a serious safety issue involving potential pedal entrapment by the floor mat.' Pedal entrapment can cause runaway acceleration."

Link: Ford's Big Data Chief Sees Massive Possibilities, but the Tools Need Work
"While Big Data is arguably the hottest buzz phrase in tech in 2012, there is a shockingly scarce amount of information about how real companies are using Big Data to do big things. We recently sat down with Ford (F), one of the world's most data-driven and data-rich companies, to talk about how the revived US automaker is using Big Data analytics for real world stuff and what kinds of possibilities it sees for the future of this red-hot segment of IT."
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