News

Outlook Congratulations to Mary Barra, who has become the first female boss of a big US car maker by taking over General Motors just as it stopped being unofficially known as Government Motors.

Vauxhall puts a price on its hot new Insignia VXR

The sporty VXR version of Vauxhall's well-received Insignia will go on sale in September with prices starting at £30,995. Saloon, hatchback and estate versions will be available.

BAIC plans for GM Europe include $2bn plant in China

Beijing automotive Industry Corporation's €660m (£570m) bid for GM Europe (GME) includes plans to open an Opel factory in China and build a dealership network, but has little detail on the future of Vauxhall jobs in the UK.

Judge rejects challenge to GM restructuring plans

An American bankruptcy court judge has approved the government-brokered restructuring of General Motors, less than a month after a financial restructuring of rival Chrysler was also rubber-stamped by the US legal system.

Observations: Clint Eastwood, a fistful of muscle cars...and that pink Cadillac

If you are the kind of gnarly old Hollywood grand-daddy who seems to have been hewn from the very rock on which America was built – in other words, Clint Eastwood – your film career can probably be oversimplified to three or four props. In his case these might be: horses, guns, stubble and cars. Automobiles have always been central to Eastwood's machismo, as important to his masculine image as the once-ever-present cheroot hanging from his mouth.

China may veto Hummer deal on green concerns

The little Chinese company that plans to buy Hummer, the maker of hulking off-road vehicles which is currently owned by General Motors, was last night trying to shore up confidence in its ability to do the deal, after a state-owned radio station in China said regulators planned to block it.

Henderson to the rescue at General Motors

A new boss faces the tough task of revamping the troubled US carmaker. David Welch reports

Minor British Institutions: The British Interplanetary Society

Anyone driving around Vauxhall will have been struck by an otherwise-nondescript building emblazoned with the words "British Interplanetary Society" in big letters. It looks like the HQ of some eccentric sect dedicated to making friends with alien races, and comes from the exciting time when we could still dream of travelling to the moon, but just before we realised that, actually, space is a bit boring because there aren't any aliens out there, after all.

Mandelson in Berlin to talk Vauxhall jobs

Lord Mandelson was in Berlin yesterday to barter for Vauxhall's 5000 UK jobs with Siegfried Wolf, the chief executive of Magna International, the Canadian car parts group in pole position to take over Vauxhall parent GM Europe (GME).

Leading article: A gamble on four wheels

The origins of General Motors' problems go back decades, but its filing yesterday for Chapter 11 protection was still a historic moment.

Obama hopes for 'more competitive' GM

US car giant General Motors filed for bankruptcy today in a move that will allow it to restructure as a "stronger and more competitive" company, President Barack Obama said.

GM falls into bankruptcy – US government steps in

Auto giant succumbs to 'worst of all options' amid Republican talk of 'socialism'

Whitehall worried about Deripaska link to Magna

Concerns are growing in Whitehall over links between Oleg Deripaska, the billionaire Russian oligarch, and the consortium set to rescue Opel and Vauxhall, the European arms of General Motors (GM).

Vauxhall faces grim future as German ministers fall out

Berlin could put Opel unit into trusteeship if American parent files for bankruptcy

Deals forged in US car-maker crisis

As General Motors set out proposals to slash jobs, close plants and scrap the famous Pontiac brand, new agreements fell into place between Chrysler and its unions in the United States and Canada.

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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture