News In Brief

READ? IN A LIBRARY? NO WAY So much for volunteerism. Sixth-grader John O'Connor wanted to donate a half-hour of his time per week to help younger children learn to read - at a branch of the San Francisco Public Library. He even picked the book he'd use, a costume to wear, and a nickname: the Reading Wizard. What's more he drafted fliers to invite prospective students to his classes. But staffers turned him down flat before he could finish presenting his proposal. Library branches already offer "story time" for preschoolers, an official explained. Disappointed but undaunted, John said he isn't ready to drop the idea just yet.

THE TRAIN iSN'T AN OPTION

This fall, folks attending the annual London October Motorshow will be treated to a live program by the famous Oxford University debating society. So they'll feel at home, the participants plan to bring along such props as a table and benches, not to mention 400 fellow members to witness the arguments. And they plan to come by road - a trip of about 60 miles. Oh, the issue they'll be debating: Should Britons be forced to drive less?

Poll finds Jaguar has fewest defects among '99 models

J.D. Power & Associates has released some data from its annual and widely followed measure of new-vehicle quality. The report is based on results of a survey of 41,004 buyers of 1999-models, who were asked about problems found during their first 90 days of ownership. The average for all makes was 167 defects per 100 vehicles. Jaguar had the fewest - 110. At the bottom, Kia had the most - 333. The 10 with the fewest reported flaws per 100 vehicles:

1. Jaguar 110

2. Buick 114

3. Infiniti 118

4. Acura 124

5. BMW 125

6. Lexus 131

7. Toyota 135

8. Honda 137

9. Cadillac 139

10. Chrysler 148

- Associated Press

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