• 09 Mar 2022 2:19 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    - Wendy Orthman has joined in the role of Executive Director, Marketing

    News Provided by: Genesis Motor America

    Genesis Motor America is pleased to announce the expansion of its executive leadership team with the appointment of Peter Donnellan as Executive Director, After Sales, Customer Satisfaction, and Training, and Wendy Orthman as Executive Director, Marketing. Both Donnellan and Orthman will be reporting to Claudia Marquez, chief operating officer of Genesis Motor North America.

    Donnellan joins Genesis from Audi where he held multiple positions as Regional Aftersales Manager, VP of Aftersales for FAW-VW in Changchun, China, and Senior Vice President of Aftersales. During his tenure, he led the strategic efforts that improved the company's JD Power CSI ranking by 11 spots to #1. Internally, his strong leadership skills allowed him to improve the annual employee satisfaction score from last place to first place. Peter's experience also includes roles in Customer Service Operations and Owner Retention with Lexus and various field positions in Sales and Service with Acura and Honda. He has a Bachelor of Science degree from Northern Illinois University.

    "Peter is a leader with a proven track record in driving exceptional customer experience results," said Marquez. "As a brand with the ambition to provide a tailored experience to suit the needs of our customers, we are pleased to have Peter onboard."

    Wendy Orthman will lead Genesis marketing strategy in the U.S., continuing to grow awareness and consideration for the brand.

    Orthman brings more than two decades of integrated marketing and communications experience in the auto industry both in the US and abroad. She joins Genesis from INFINITI Motor Company where she was the Global Head of Brand, Marketing & Communications based in Yokohama, Japan. Prior to that, her extensive marketing and communications background includes roles focused on brand, social media, and product lifestyle communications at Nissan, FCA and GM.

    "Genesis is a new brand with an incredible opportunity to grow," said Marquez. "I am looking forward to working with Wendy to enhance and grow our presence in the market and increase consumer consideration for the brand."

    Orthman brings a passion for creative thinking, diversity and inclusion, and challenging the status quo. She was an early adopter in leveraging the power of social media in automotive, and has won awards for creative launches. Orthman holds an Executive MBA from Northwood University and a Bachelor of Science in Telecommunications & Advertising from Michigan State University.

    Genesis Motor North America

    At Genesis, we put the customer at the core of everything we do. Genesis is a global automotive brand that delivers the highest standards of performance, design, safety, and innovation while looking towards a more sustainable future. Genesis designs customer experiences that go beyond products, embodying audacious, forward-thinking, and distinctly Korean characteristics within its unique Athletic Elegance design identity. With a growing range of award-winning models — including the 2022 MotorTrend SUV of the Year, GV70, along with G70, G80, G90, GV60, and GV80 — Genesis aims to lead the age of electrification by focusing on a dual electrification strategy involving fuel-cell and battery EVs, starting with its Electrified G80 and GV60 electric models.  Genesis has stated its commitment to becoming a 100% zero emission vehicle brand by 2030 and to pursuing carbon neutrality by 2035.

    SOURCE Genesis Motor America

  • 28 Feb 2022 10:10 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    CHICAGO (Feb. 28, 2022) – The Chicago Automobile Trade Association (CATA) today announced that Jennifer Morand was named co-CEO of the 500-member dealer association. She joins David Sloan in the top job as they together lead the organization that represents the Chicago area’s franchised, new-car dealers and produces the annual Chicago Auto Show. Effective March 1, Morand will officially transition to the role of President of the CATA and General Manager of the Chicago Auto Show.

    “I’ve known for a number of years that Jen would someday be President of the CATA and General Manager of the Chicago Auto Show,” said Sloan. “When she was recruited by an outside organization for a great opportunity, I realized it would take a bold move to keep her.  So, we accelerated the timeline a bit and we couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome.”

    “This is a pivotal time for the franchised dealer model, the association and the auto show,” said Sloan.  “Jen’s strengths as a communicator and a marketer perfectly align with where we want to take the organization as well as the future of the auto show.”

    “When I first made the offer, she declined, but then I got our Executive Committee involved and they were incredibly supportive and persuasive,” said Sloan.

    “Jen is the type of person that you just can’t let go,” said CATA Chairman Kevin Keefe.  “We’re thrilled that she and Dave will lead the organization for a two-year transition, at which time she will fully take the reins.”

    “I applaud Dave for having the foresight to appoint Jen as his successor, even if it meant expediting his own retirement timeline,” said Keefe. “When he shared the vision with me and the board, it clicked with us immediately. We’re excited to see what’s in store for the future of the association and the Chicago Auto Show, especially at this crucial time when change is imminent.”  

    A graduate of the University of Iowa, Morand began her career with the CATA in 2008 as a seasonal Communications Specialist to help with public relations for the 2009 Chicago Auto Show.  After working in agency public relations for several years she returned to the CATA as Manager of Public Relations and Social Media in 2012.  She was promoted to Director in 2014 and has established the Chicago Auto Show as an industry leader through strategic media relations, targeted digital campaigns and social media engagement year-round—despite the show only being 10 days.

    Sloan has been with the CATA since 1993, beginning as Executive Vice President before being named President in January 2010. He worked for General Motors Corporation’s Communications prior to joining the CATA.

    “I am beyond grateful and honored to have been recruited by Dave and the CATA board for this prestigious, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” said Morand. “After an intense period of carefully weighing all sides—while simultaneously producing the auto show, nonetheless!—it quickly became clear that accepting the role was the right decision all around. I couldn’t have dreamed up a better scenario than to have a steady, strategic leader in Dave to stay on board through the transition period.”

    “It’s evident the auto industry is rapidly changing, and we need to be planning for the future, not adapting to the now,” continued Morand. “I look forward to rising to the challenge to lead this organization into the next decade and beyond.”

    For more information on the CATA, visit For more information on the Chicago Auto Show, visit


    About the Chicago Automobile Trade Association

    Founded in 1904 and located in Oakbrook Terrace, the Chicago Automobile Trade Association is comprised of more than 400 franchised new-car dealers and an additional 150 allied members. The group’s dealer members employ about 19,000 people in the metropolitan area. The association has produced the world famous Chicago Auto Show since 1935. For more information, please visit

    About the Chicago Auto Show

    First staged in 1901, the Chicago Auto Show is the nation’s longest running auto exposition in North America. The show is produced by the Chicagoland’s new-car dealer association, the Chicago Automobile Trade Association, which has staged the show since 1935. The 2022 public show is Feb. 12-21 at McCormick Place. For more information and the latest updates, visit or

  • 25 Jan 2022 11:38 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    MAMA kicked off the 2022 eMeet season with guests from Ford to discuss the new 2022 Maverick compact pickup. After MAMA VP Robert Duffer welcomed the 40 members in attendance, he introduced Ford representatives Rhonda Bambrick from Ford’s communications team; Trevor Scott, Marketing Manager for the Ford Maverick and Ranger; and Dawn McKenzie, Communications Manager for the Ford Trucks line.

    Many MAMA members have already experienced the Maverick through events or press drives, so this eMeet was less like an introduction, and more like a second or third date. Trevor Scott refreshed meeting attendees on Maverick’s specs and features while providing insight on the truck’s success so far. As Ford anticipated, the unibody pickup, with its standard 5-passenger crew cab, has captured buyers both new to the brand and to trucks in general.

    Some noteworthy trends from early sales data:

    • Strong interest in coastal areas where pickups are not typically popular
    • Many buyers transitioned from sedan or SUV ownership
    • Buyers are younger and skew more female and more diverse than traditional pickup sales

    One of Maverick’s unique features is its customizable bed, designed specifically to encourage DIYers to come up with new and creative ways to fit the truck into an active lifestyle. Many Maverick owners share their innovations on social media, which has created a community feel among early adopters. Custom bike racks are an especially popular example, according to Scott.

    "There's really a lot of exciting things we're seeing from our customer base thus far," said Scott.

    The Maverick has proven so popular that the initial production run of hybrid-powered trucks is already spoken for, the model enjoys a turnaround time of just four days on a dealer lot, and it has earned several accolades, including 2022 North American Truck of the Year and Car Connection’s 2022 Best Car to Buy. Check out the Chicago Auto Show, from February 12-21, to see it for yourself.

    Key specs and features of the 2022 Ford Maverick include:

    • Unibody design with 5-passenger cabin
    • XL, XLT, and Lariat trims
    • FX4 package for upgraded off-road capability
    • Base hybrid model; turbocharged 4-cylinder powertrain available
    • FWD standard; AWD available with turbo 4-cylinder
    • 4,000-lb max towing capacity
    • 8.0-inch touchscreen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay capabilities
    • Starting price of $19,995

    Member Coverage:

  • 19 Jan 2022 9:18 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA), an organization comprised of automotive journalists and related industry professionals, elected its 2022 board of directors during its annual January business meeting, which was held virtually via Zoom.

    MAMA President Harvey Briggs, Senior Vice President Robert Duffer, Vice President of Membership Jennifer Newman, and President Emeritus Damon Bell continue into the second year of their two-year terms.

    Kelley Enright, who served as Secretary, moves into the role of Treasurer. Cherise Threewitt and Jim OBrill were elected to two-year terms as Secretary and Communications Director, respectively. 

    During the annual business meeting it was reported that the association, which was founded in 1991, currently maintains a membership of 240 automotive journalists and industry professionals serving in the automotive industry or related fields.

    It was also announced that the winners of MAMA’s annual Family Vehicle of the Year and Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year awards will be revealed at the Chicago Auto Show MAMA Breakfast on February 10.

    The finalists for Family Vehicle of the Year are the 2022 Hyundai Tucson, 2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L, and 2022 Kia Carnival. For Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year, the finalists are the 2022 Acura MDX, 2022 Genesis GV70, and 2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer/Wagoneer.

    For more information on the Midwest Automotive Media Association and related news, visit


    About the Midwest Automotive Media Association

    Founded in 1991, and now in its 31st year, the Midwest Automotive Media Association comprises 240 automotive journalists and public relations professionals from across the country – though based in the Chicago area. The organization’s primary purpose is to provide a forum for newsworthy people, major issues and new products in the auto industry.

  • 20 Oct 2021 10:35 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin – Oct. 19, 2021 – The Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA) hosted the 2021 MAMA Rally last week at Road America, one of the world’s premier road racing tracks. Over the course of two days, more than 70 automotive and related industry journalists had the opportunity to put a variety of the industry’s latest vehicles through their paces including on-track, scenic street drives and a technical off-road course. 

    “What better way to celebrate MAMA’s 30th anniversary than reconnecting with so many colleagues to experience the latest and greatest from the auto industry at this legendary track following a challenging year,” said MAMA President Harvey Briggs. 

    A handful of the attending manufacturers also provided detailed overviews of their latest product offerings. Additionally, it was the first time journalists were able to experience the all-new 2022 Jeep Compass Limited, which made a special appearance at the Rally following its global reveal at the 2021 Chicago Auto Show Special Edition.

    Road America sponsored the morning breakfast to get attendees fueled up for a fun day at the track. It was mentioned during the breakfast that Road America will host major IndyCar, NASCAR, IMSA and vintage car races in the upcoming 2022 season. Following the morning of track touring laps and street drive evaluations, Nissan’s Product Planner Wade Willat shared highlights of the 2022 Nissan Frontier with MAMA members during a lunch presentation. Willat discussed the ways in which the iconic mid-sized pickup was totally redesigned for the 2022 model year including a rugged, bold exterior; adventure-oriented interior; a best-in-class 310 horsepower; and equipped with the latest driver assistance and connectivity technologies.

    “Nissan is happy to continue its partnership with the Midwest Automotive Media Association at their member-only events,” said Wendy Payne, Nissan Midwest Regional Communications Manager. “Their solid media group offers us the opportunity to showcase newly launched vehicles such as the all-new 2022 Frontier to this important audience in order to help us get the messages out on new products.” 

    The 2022 Frontier arrived at dealerships last month. Pricing begins at $27,840 for the Frontier S King Cab 4x2.

    After the track closed and street drives concluded for the day, a dozen MAMA members took part in the inaugural “4 Miles of Fitness,” sponsored by Kia, a new on-track fitness event where attendees had the chance to run, bike, or walk a shortened two, or all four miles of the Road America racetrack that they drove on just moments earlier.

    Later that evening, Lexus hosted the dinner presentation to showcase the 2022 NX 350 and 2022 IS 500. The NX 350 expands to four powertrains, including a 2.4-liter turbo and Lexus’ first-ever 2.5-liter plug-in hybrid, and is the first vehicle with Lexus Safety System+ 3.0 and digital latch with safe exit assist. As the first model in the new Lexus F SPORT Performance line, the IS 500 engine provides a boost in displacement and performance over the IS 350’s 3.5-liter V6. It expands the IS family and ushers in a new era of F SPORT Performance models that are geared towards passionate driving enthusiasts who desire higher levels of performance over the standard F SPORT Design and Handling models.

    “The MAMA Rally continues to be one of the premier events for automotive media in the country,” said Curt McAllister, Midwest Public Relations Manager for Toyota/Lexus, and a 24-year MAMA member. “Road America is the perfect backdrop to showcase our vehicles on and off the track. The dinner sponsorship provided Lexus a tremendous opportunity to do a deep dive on two of our newest products, the 2022 NX and 2022 IS 500.” 

    Jeep opened the second morning of the MAMA Rally with a breakfast presentation on the 2022 Jeep Grand Wagoneer and the 2021 Grand Cherokee L, both of which were available for test drives during the Rally. 

    “For 80 years, the Jeep brand has introduced an iconic lineup of vehicles. The off-road course created by the team at Jeep Jamboree at this year's Midwest Automotive Media Association Rally was the perfect place to showcase some of the newest Jeep models,” said Scott Tallon, Product Director, Jeep Brand – North America. “Providing SUVs for both on and off-road driving, like the premium Grand Wagoneer, the family-friendly Jeep Grand Cherokee L, the redesigned Jeep Compass, along with the rugged 4x4 Jeep Wrangler, enables the media to experience the same level of passion and excitement of adventure that our customers do.” 

    Throughout the day, journalists also had the opportunity to maneuver 4WD and AWD trucks and SUVs through a newly created off-road course designed by experts from Jeep Jamboree and sponsored by Jeep. Participating vehicles included the Ford Bronco, Ford Raptor, Jeep Grand Cherokee L, Jeep Wagoneer, Jeep Wrangler 392 Xtreme Recon, Jeep Wrangler 4xe, Nissan Frontier, Ram TRX, Subaru Outback Wilderness and Toyota 4Runner.

    Following an action-packed morning of more street driving, off-roading and MAMA Family Vehicle of the Year and Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year analysis, Volkswagen wrapped up the Rally with a lunch presentation and overview of the 2021 ID.4 AWD. The Volkswagen ID.4 is the brand’s first all-electric SUV and first global EV. Built on Volkswagen’s MEB electric vehicle architecture, ID.4 marries the strengths of a purpose-built EV with performance, packaging and value, features that have marked the brand for decades.

    “ID.4 is a transformational car for Volkswagen, at a transformational time in our industry,” said Mark Gillies, Senior Manager of Product Communications for Volkswagen of America. “We are pleased to have such a great group of journalists experience everything the car delivers for our customers and for the brand as a whole.”

    In addition to the meal sponsorships and presentations, MAMA received support from the following sponsors: Acura,, Chicago Automobile Trade Association, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Mazda and Mercedes-Benz. 

    Voting for MAMA’s annual Family Vehicle of the Year (FVOTY) and Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year (LFVOTY) Awards also took place. The finalists include:

    FVOTY Finalists:

    ·        2022 Honda Civic 

    ·        2022 Hyundai Tucson

    ·        2021 Jeep Grand Cherokee L

    ·        2022 Kia Carnival

    ·        2021 Toyota Sienna 

    ·        2021 Volkswagen ID.4 

    LFVOTY Finalists:

    ·        2022 Acura MDX

    ·        2022 Genesis GV70 

    ·        2022 Infiniti QX60

    ·        2022 Jeep Wagoneer/Grand Wagoneer

    ·        2022 Lexus NX

    ·        2021 Mercedes-Benz S Class

    To qualify for the awards, the vehicle must have four doors and be new or significantly updated within a year of the Rally. Eligible vehicles must have been available to drive at MAMA’s July 2021 Summer Drive and this 2021 Rally. A final round of online voting will then take place to determine the overall winner in each category, both of which will be announced during the MAMA breakfast that will open the 2022 Chicago Auto Show Media Preview in February. 

    For more information on the Midwest Automotive Media Association, please visit




    About the Midwest Automotive Media Association

    Founded in 1991 and now in its 30th year, the Midwest Automotive Media Association (MAMA) comprises nearly 240 automotive journalists and industry professionals from approximately 25 states and the District of Columbia. Though based in the Chicago area, MAMA welcomes members from all parts of the country. The organization’s primary purpose is to provide a forum for newsworthy people, current issues and new products in the auto industry.

  • 14 Apr 2021 10:12 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Last month, Nissan held an eMeet to introduce the redesigned 2022 Pathfinder to the MAMA audience. Vishnu Jayamohan, Nissan’s Senior Manager of Product Strategy and Planning, opened the presentation by sharing Nissan’s mission with the new Pathfinder, which was to “fuse truck-like brawn and people-mover brains into an unbeatable product.” Jayamohan also communicated that the Pathfinder was designed for the “super-parent” who needs the “swiss-army knife” of a three-row family hauler.

    This set the stage for all of the truck’s specifications to follow. Some key highlights of the 2022 Pathfinder include:

    • All-new bold, rugged design.
    • All-new 9-speed transmission for a smooth, direct response.
    • All-new Intelligent 4WD with 7-position Drive and Terrain Mode Selector.
    • Best-in-class available 6,000-lb. maximum towing capacity which allows drivers to confidently haul boats, ATVs, and trailers.
    • Seating for up to eight, new captain's chairs option, and new EZ FLEX one-touch release (adding comfort and flexibility for the whole family).
    • All-new available 10.8-inch Head-up Display, 12.3-inch digital dashboard, ProPILOT Assist with Navi-Link, and standard Nissan Safety Shield 360 that leads to confident driving on- and off-road.
    • Wireless Apple CarPlay (offered for the first time on Pathfinder) and wireless charging.

    The Pathfinder nameplate was first introduced 35 years ago which, according to Nissan, has helped the brand to refine itself with lessons learned along the way. Today, the 2022 Pathfinder conveys strength and rugged capability paired with advanced safety and technology features to keep families safe and comfortable.

    Some key exterior highlights include:

    • Sculpted, fresh body slides.
    • New floating C-pillar.
    • Unique fender crease line over each wheel.
    • Distinctive U-shaped headlights fuse powerful fender blisters together.

     Interior features include:

    • Refined new premium materials with quilting.
    • Seven available “environments” (such as brushed bronze metallic accents).
    • Wide, open instrument panel with a user-friendly layout.
    • New 9-inch. touchscreen placed high for easy visibility.  
    • Integrated electronic shifter allows room for wide “bridge” center console.
    • Cabin quietness has been drastically improved.

    The all-new 2022 Pathfinder is offered in 2WD and 4WD and in four grades: S, SV, SL, and Platinum. Two packages, SV Premium and SL Premium, are also available. The Pathfinder is set to go on sale this summer; pricing is still TBA.

  • 14 Apr 2021 9:42 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Last month, Mazda hosted an eMeet to share more about the 2021 Mazda3 and CX-30 turbo models. Kingsley Iduma, Mazda’s Vehicle Line Planning Manager, led the Zoom meeting to share the primary highlights of the vehicles. He touched on three key components:

    • Elevated performance: Mazda took another step forward with the introduction of its turbo-charged engine with standard all-wheel drive on both the Mazda3 and CX-30 turbo models.
    • Advanced technology: New technologies were introduced in the 2021 Mazda3 and CX-30 turbo models to further heighten the brand’s safety reputation within the industry and meet the expectations of customers shopping for a premium vehicle.
    • Craftsmanship: The new turbo models adopt a matured “Kodo” design, taking inspiration from Japanese aesthetics and adopting a “less is more” approach. Mazda focused solely on what is essential to both vehicles’ form when crafting these new models.

    Mazda3 2.5 Turbo

    The new 2.5-liter turbo engine gives the 2021 Mazda3 heightened power and performance. Available as a sedan or hatchback, the Mazda3 turbo puts out 250 horsepower and 320 lb.-ft. of torque through a six-speed automatic. The Mazda3 2.5 Turbo now comes standard with all-wheel drive.

    Additional premium feature highlights include a color head-up display with street-sign recognition, 12-speaker Bose audio system, and 18-inch forged BBS wheels.

    Mazda CX-30 Turbo

    For the 2021 model year, the biggest difference in the CX-30 is its new turbo-charged engine. According to Mazda, this upscale powertrain brings more peak power while delivering a direct and connected driving experience. Additionally, the new turbo-charged engine delivers better traction capabilities, improving the driver’s handling and confidence. The 2021 model comes standard with all-wheel drive and a six-speed automatic.

    Additional available features include:

    • Bose 12-speaker premium audio
    • Heated steering
    • Leather seats
    • Power liftgate
    • 360-degree monitoring
    • Head-up display
    • Traffic jam assist
    • Smart city brake support reverse
    • Rear cross traffic braking

    Official pricing for both the 2021 Mazda3 and CX-30 turbo models has yet to be released, but it’s expected to hover around $30,000.

    Save the date! The next MAMA eMeet is on the calendar for Thursday, April 22 at 11 a.m. CDT. The topic is centered around April’s National Car Care Month and the presentation will be led by Turtle Wax. To register, click here

  • 05 Apr 2021 3:50 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Car Talk with Click and Clack might have popularized car shopping and maintenance tips as entertainment worthy of radio waves, but the proliferation of podcasts has led to topics as varying as every make, model, and trim. MAMA members spend many hours on the road, and these portable podcast companions illuminate the latest news as well as interview guests and pop quizzes.

    Some broadcasts can be caught on the AM radio, and in cars where that’s not possible (Volvo, Tesla, what’s the frequency?), there are podcasts, available wherever and whenever there is the internet.

    Here’s a brief rundown of MAMA member podcasts that we like to lend an ear. Most can be found on the internet or through podcast platforms ranging from Apple Podcasts to Spotify.

    Consumer Guide Automotive Car Stuff Podcast

    The editorial team of Consumer Guide Automotive featuring host Tom Appel and co-host Damon Bell partners with co-host Jill Ciminillo in an honor roll of past MAMA presidents in this 50-minute weekly recap available online any time but also broadcast on WCPT AM 820 radio every Sunday at 1pm CST. The format bridges fun and fact with a news recap to start the set before a guest host takes this party of three into a fantastic foursome playing through a weekly quiz, new car review, and automotive ephemera from the week.

    Drive Chicago Radio Podcast

    The long-running radio show broadcast Saturdays from 8 a.m.- 9 a.m. on WLS-AM 890 extends life as a podcast. WLS News anchor Rob Martier joins co-hosts Mark Bilek, past MAMA president and current Senior Director of Communications for the Chicago Automobile Trade Association (CATA), and Jim OBrill, Director of Marketing for CATA, to present a weekly microcosm of the Chicago Auto Show. In addition to covering the weekly automotive news, the hosts interview a guest, review a specific model, and talk car shopping tips and maintenance advice.

    True Road Trip Tales Podcast

    At the crossroads of cars and rock ‘n roll is the road trip, and this upstart podcast features narrative-based stories of the road trips that define our lives and the playlists that rock our souls. Host and founder Scott Leff interviews a guest with insight from resident gearhead Brian Smith and a score from producer Tyson Ellert. MAMA VP Robert Duffer was featured in Episode 8 at the end of Season 1 in “Road Trip Reawakening.” Unscheduled Maintenance Podcast

    Entering a third season, “Unscheduled Maintenance” is 20-minute podcast from and hosted by Steve Gaede that focuses on car dealer marketing and the back-end of how dealer websites work, and how they don’t.

    Pickup Truck + SUV Talk Podcast

    This infrequent podcast builds off host Tim Esterdahl and co-host and MAMA member Jill Ciminillo’s live-streamed segments from their YouTube page, covering the latest pickup truck and SUV news, of course.

    RoadWorthy Drive Podcast

    The RoadWorthy Drive podcast is where mobility and technology meet the open road. This weekly podcast doesn't always "color between the lines" as MAMA member Ken Chester and Chase Siebert discuss and debate the various aspects of mobility and related technology. From your current daily driver to EVs, autonomous vehicles, micromobility, heavy trucks, and space travel, it's subject to be covered. Related issues such as privacy and security are also discussed. 


    The Fast Lane Talkin’ Cars Podcast

    While they’re not MAMA members, it’s worth noting this podcast. Fathers and sons, cars and trash talking, go together like gas and engines. Father-son duo Roman Mica and son Tommy take their charm and insights from the video reviews posted on and apply it to this weekly hour-long podcast full of genuine laughs, filial bickering, and compelling automotive news of the week. The banter between these two is as fun as the cars they’re covering.

  • 05 Apr 2021 3:16 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    MAMA’s first president, Jim Mateja, played an important role in Robert Duffer joining MAMA back in 2014. Duffer, who at the time was the Chicago Tribune’s Autos editor, brought back the veteran automotive journalist as a freelance writer, and with Mateja’s return, Duffer also got a mentor who was “always nudging me to be a part of MAMA.”

    Thankfully, Duffer listened to Mateja and joined MAMA. He later became a rally committee member, and today, he’s MAMA’s senior VP, working with MAMA President Harvey Briggs. 

    Duffer is a senior editor at The Car Connection. He lives in Action Heights, a suburb of Chicago more commonly known as Arlington Heights, with his two kids and a dog.

    Q: What led you to accept the senior VP role?

    A: With my professional life more solidified following the Tribune, and my personal life less chaotic with my kids getting older and my dog getting less dumb, I was overdue to give back to an organization that has given me so many unique opportunities. I also wanted the challenge of serving our member journalists as well as automotive partners in expanding our reach and creating unique programs, pandemic be damned, that benefit enthusiasts, consumers, and anyone else interested in four-wheel fun.

    Q: What 2021 MAMA plans have you most excited?

    A: I’m looking forward to seeing my friends in the automotive world. That’s one big reason I’m looking forward to the rally in October. The other is burning rubber at Road America.

    Q: What makes MAMA stand apart from other automotive organizations?

    A: The people. I don’t know if it’s the goofy acronym that I’m sure Mateja is still winking at from up high, or the alleged Midwestern sensibilities, but MAMA folk are like family, and the family reunions are on race tracks and off-road courses.

    Q: What’s been keeping you sane (or somewhat sane) during the pandemic?

    A: Dog walks, long drives, random hikes, checking off the ever-growing list of home improvement projects, and spending a lot of unusual quality time with my kids, who both became teens during the pandemic. There’s been a lot of ping-pong and basement mini-hoop, chess and board games, and we wrote a song or two about Gingerbread the dog.

    Keep up with Duffer’s Twitter musings at @DufferRobert, and read more of his work at

  • 05 Apr 2021 3:14 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    MAMA continues to have success keeping its members informed in a (primarily) virtual world via its eMeet series. The one-hour presentations are intended to keep manufacturers connected with media individuals to share the latest product and company news, with most concluding with a live Q&A session among the presenters and the media attendees.

    Following each eMeet, MAMA recaps the presentations via its News section on the MAMA website. Refer to this link when digging for more details and information on recent and past MAMA eMeets. Also follow along live with the hashtag #MAMAeMeet.

    A brief outline of the latest eMeets include:

    • Hyundai hosted another eMeet to share details of its significantly refreshed 2021 Santa Fe 5-passenger SUV.
    • Kia introduced the 2021 Sorento to MAMA members and fielded live questions from the audience.
    • Maserati hosted its first eMeet to share updates on the recently unveiled MC20 and share the scoop on the luxury brand’s 2021 model year lineup.
    • Nissan hosted another presentation to introduce the newly re-invented 2022 Nissan Pathfinder to members. 
    • Mazda closed out the month with an eMeet to discuss the 2021 Mazda3 and CX-30 turbo models.
    • Next up on the MAMA calendar is an eMeet with Turtle Wax to talk about car care (April is National Car Care Month). This will take place virtually April 22 at 1 p.m. CDT. Be on the lookout for this invite. 

    MAMA also hosted the 2021 MAMA Family Vehicle and Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year Awards announcement via a virtual #MAMAeMeet. The 2021 Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban received the 11th annual Family Vehicle of the Year award and the 2021 Genesis G80 was announced as the Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year. Voting for the 2022 MAMA Family Vehicle and Luxury Family Vehicle of the Year Awards will begin at the 2021 MAMA Rally, scheduled to take place Oct. 13-14 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. 

    If you’re an automaker or affiliate member interested in setting up an eMeet, please contact MAMA SVP Robert Duffer.

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