Driving around the streets of London and Geneva over the last couple of days, I have noticed a conspicuous absence of Infiniti and Acura models. The premium brands of (respectively) Nissan and Honda are virtually unknown in Western European countries, where they are currently unavailable. This is about to change, however, as Nissan prepares to use this week's Geneva auto show to launch the first Infiniti models for the European market. According to the Financial Times, Infiniti has "Europeanised" its lineup (smaller engines, diesel options), and will launch with four models, including a brand-new FX crossover SUV, … Read more
Electronic Arts is not alone in its interest in buying Grand Theft Auto publisher Take-Two, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal (subscription required to read entire article).
SEC filings show that Take-Two says it has received other offers, but has spurned those as well as the original $2 billion offer EA made last Friday and announced last Sunday, the Journal reports.
EA issued a public statement on Sunday saying it had made an earlier offer to Take-Two that was rejected and that it was boosting the per-share price it was willing to pay to make the deal … Read more
Honda announced it will unveil a new global hybrid car at the 2008 Paris Auto Show, which will launch in 2009 along with another hybrid based on the CR-Z concept. Both cars will be produced as hybrid models without a gas-only counterpart, similar to Toyota's Prius. These hybrids are part of Honda's strategy to sell 400,000 hybrids per year by 2011. The new global hybrid will launch in Europe first, then come to North America. Both hybrids will use updated versions of Honda's integrated motor assist (IMA) mild hybrid system, currently used in the Honda Civic … Read more
We're packing our bags for the Geneva auto show with high expectations. Europe's annual automotive jamboree is usually chock full with inventive concepts and new model debuts, but this year's show promises to be bigger than ever. We've already got word on more than 30 new car unveils and at least a dozen design concepts--and they're just the ones we know about in advance. From Maserati's Gran Turismo S to soft-top versions of the Fiat 500 and BMW M3 to the subaquatic Rinspeed sQuba, our preview slide show provides just a taste of what'… Read more
The Honda Fit hasn't been around for more than a couple of years, but Honda is already announcing an update. The 2009 model, showing some distinct styling changes, will be unveiled at the New York auto show. We got to see this new Honda Fit at the Tokyo auto show last year, and didn't find the changes very groundbreaking. We recently published a review of the 2008 Honda Fit, giving us some recent experience to draw from when looking at the new design. The rear appears slightly curvier, and the whole car seems a bit longer. At the … Read more
Imagine the game industry dominated by two giants.
That's what could happen if Electronic Arts succeeds in its $2 billion attempt to grab Grand Theft Auto publisher Take-Two Interactive and Activision's planned merger with Blizzard goes through.
As in so many other industries, an EA/Take-Two merger would indicate massive consolidation, especially in the wake of the December announcement that media giant Vivendi was buying Activision to become Activision Blizzard. But gamers probably shouldn't worry that an industry pyramid dominated by EA and Activision will mean less innovation.
After all, even with a wide gap between the … Read more
Mercedes-Benz is apparently planning to use next week's Geneva auto show to unveil two new fuel-efficient versions of the C-Class sedan in the first example of a new line of "eco variants" of its main model lineup. According to Just Auto, Mercedes is planning to roll the strategy out to 20 other models over the course of the next year. BMW is also expected to launch a green concept car at the Geneva show. Both luxury German automakers are likely to be among the hardest hit by new European Commission legislation for stricter emissions and fuel efficiency … Read more
I'm not usually one to get up for something happening at 5 a.m. PT, but in the case of this morning's Electronic Arts conference call to discuss its proposed $2 billion takeover bid of Take-Two Interactive Software, I made an exception.
That's because I assumed that EA might provide some new piece of information that would materially enhance details of the game maker's Sunday bid announcement.
In reality, the EA conference call, which lasted nearly an hour, was largely a rehashing of the information the company published in its Sunday press release, accentuated … Read more
In a startling bit of news, Electronic Arts announced Sunday morning that it has launched an uninvited bid to buy Grand Theft Auto video game franchise publisher Take-Two Interactive Software for $26 a share, or what could be a $2 billion deal.
And while EA, in its press release, did not make any reference to Vivendi's December agreement to purchase Activision, there can be no doubt that this is the response EA had to make to keep its spot as the undisputed heavyweight champion of the video games business.
The announcement comes on the heels of what appears to … Read more
SAN FRANCISCO--In a frenetic keynote address at the Game Developers Conference here, Microsoft showed off the next phase of a strategy it claims will "democratize" game development and distribution.
For several years, Microsoft has been working on its XNA Studio, a platform that allows anyone to create games for the Xbox and for Windows.
But now, the company is expanding the XNA offering to allow the best community-created games to be uploaded to and distributed from Xbox Live.
Microsoft is calling the new offering its "Creators Club," and the idea is to present the Xbox Live … Read more