140103112327-auto-lot-620xbMaking predictions for the year ahead is always a hazardous business, by its nature dependent on the good will of readers, not to mention short memories. Stuff happens that confounds even the most imaginative forecasts. Predicting that Mary Barra was headed for the CEO job at GM GM was relatively pothole-free, although the December timing took most people by surprise. But who would have guessed that one of Detroit’s Rust Belt executives, Ford’s Alan Mulally, would emerge as the leading candidate to run tech giant Microsoft MSFT — especially after all the trouble Ford F has had integrating Microsoft technology in its MyTouch instrument panel control system? With those caveats in mind, here are some guesses about what awaits MotorWorld in the year ahead — some serious, others in an “anything can happen” spirit.