Americas

Alabama steel plant's new owners pledge more supply

4:16 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 18, 2014
North American auto plants soon should see an improved and greater supply of the high-strength steels needed to reduce vehicle weight and improve fuel economy, thanks to a change in ownership earlier this year of an advanced steel-finishing plant near Mobile, Ala.... Read More »

 

Calif. grants 29 permits to test self-driving Lexus, Mercedes, Audi cars

1:44 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 18, 2014
California issued its first 29 permits this week to three companies to test self-driving cars on public roads, state officials said today.... Read More »

 

Audi claims first California autonomous driving permit

11:35 am U.S. ET | Sept. 17, 2014
Volkswagen's Audi unit is the first automaker to receive an autonomous driving permit in California, as new laws in the state governing the process went into effect on Tuesday.... Read More »

 

Ford seeks younger Mustang buyers with tech features

12:44 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 17, 2014
The 2015 Ford Mustang arrives in dealerships next month as Ford's most technology-laden pony car yet. The fastback model will arrive first, followed by the convertible later in the fall. Ford hopes to appeal to a new generation of Mustang buyers -- and overseas markets -- by offering technologies never seen before in Ford's pony car.... Read More »

 

Toyota to boost Mexico truck plant capacity by 41%

8:50 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 17, 2014
As Toyota ponders its first full assembly plant in Mexico, it plans to boost capacity at its existing factory there almost 40 percent to feed demand for trucks.... Read More »

 

Tesla argues New Jersey regulators can't stop direct sales

2:06 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 17, 2014
Tesla Motors, in a court filing submitted Tuesday, argued that New Jersey regulators have no authority to shut down direct sales at the electric-vehicle maker's stores in the state.... Read More »

 

Toyota FT-1 gets the souped-up 'Gran Turismo' treatment for video game

3:02 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 16, 2014
Toyota has joined the “Gran Turismo” parade of video game racers with a beefier version of its FT-1 concept. “The design brief of this car was very simple: Take the FT-1 concept car and turn it into the most kickass, badass, super racecar you can imagine,” said Kevin Hunter, president of Toyota's Calty Design Research, during the car's video unveiling.... Read More »

 

GM adding 3rd shift to Chevy Colorado, GMC Canyon plant in Missouri

12:00 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 16, 2014
GM will add a third production shift at a Missouri assembly plant where its new midsize pickups and commercial vans are made. GM last week started output of the redesigned 2015 Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon at the factory after a two-year hiatus for the trucks.... Read More »

 

Toyota pauses on Mexico expansion to review growth strategy, report says

10:15 am U.S. ET | Sept. 16, 2014
Toyota is reconsidering a move to open a new compact car assembly plant in Mexico after company President Akio Toyoda told planners searching for a site to pause and review its rationale, executives familiar with the matter said.... Read More »

 

Tesla prevails in top Mass. court over direct sales

5:52 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 15, 2014
Massachusetts' highest court on Monday threw out a lawsuit seeking to block Tesla from selling its luxury electric cars directly to consumers in the state, enabling it to bypass traditional dealerships.... Read More »

 

U.S. Treasury chief warns China on antitrust probes of foreign companies

2:32 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 15, 2014
Treasury Secretary Jack Lew warned the Chinese government that a recent spate of antitrust investigations against foreign automakers and other companies could have serious implications for U.S.-China relations.... Read More »

 

Nissan may pull the plug on some battery-plant production, buy from LG Chem

7:52 am U.S. ET | Sept. 15, 2014
Nissan may begin purchasing electric-vehicle batteries from LG Chem as it opens procurement to external suppliers in addition to its own manufacturing with NEC Corp., CEO Carlos Ghosn said today.... Read More »

 

Ford seating supplier Lear struck by UAW in Indiana

10:44 am U.S. ET | Sept. 14, 2014
Workers at a Lear plant in Indiana that makes seats for Ford went on strike Saturday, according to Chicago media reports. The plant in Hammond, Ind., employs 760 and supplies seats for Ford's Explorer and Taurus cars... Read More »

 

U.S. charges former dealership salesman, other man in California with odometer fraud

3:55 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 12, 2014
Two California men, one a former salesman at a Los Angeles Ford dealership, were charged with rolling back odometers, the Justice Department said today.... Read More »

 

Tesla's $1.3 billion incentive deal with Nevada includes direct sales

6:30 am U.S. ET | Sept. 12, 2014
Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval signed tax breaks worth as much as $1.3 billion and a measure allowing Tesla Motors to sell directly to state residents, the final steps to bring the world's largest lithium-ion battery factory to Reno.... Read More »

 

AMY WILSON

How two old friends made the AutoNation-Barrier deal happen

11:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2014
Jimmy Barrier's decision to sell his Seattle-area luxury-brand dealerships to AutoNation was more than 30 years in the making. That's how far back Barrier goes with AutoNation CEO Mike Jackson.... Read More »

 

Toyota scouting Mexico for assembly plant, reports say

2:50 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 10, 2014
Toyota, the last of the world's major automakers without a full assembly plant in Mexico, is scouting the country for possible factory sites, two people with direct knowledge of the matter said.... Read More »

 

Athletic Mazda2 debuts as test on many levels

9:00 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 10, 2014
Mazda unveiled a more athletic fourth-generation Mazda2 hatchback late Wednesday, deploying its latest Skyactiv drivetrain and chassis technologies into the subcompact segment. The upgrade is sorely needed to keep the pint-sized car relevant in an increasingly competitive field against such upstarts as the hot-selling Chevrolet Sonic and Ford Fiesta.... Read More »

 

Tesla tax breaks to be debated by Nevada lawmakers

6:37 am U.S. ET | Sept. 10, 2014
Nevada lawmakers convened a special legislative session in Carson City today to consider a package of tax breaks estimated at up to $1.3 billion aimed at cementing a deal with Tesla Motors for a $5 billion battery plant.... Read More »

 

AutoNation to buy 4 luxury dealerships in Seattle market

9:15 am U.S. ET | Sept. 10, 2014
AutoNation is expanding its footprint in the Pacific Northwest by buying four luxury-brand dealerships in the Seattle market that generate more than $350 million in annual revenue.... Read More »

 

U.S. sales strength will hold through the year, Edmunds says

4:24 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 9, 2014
August's surge in auto demand in the United States could help lift this year's sales totals above levels last seen in 2006, Edmunds.com analysts said today.... Read More »

 

California generates 40% of U.S. plug-in car sales, report says

10:55 am U.S. ET | Sept. 9, 2014
California drivers are fueling the sale of rechargeable cars in the United States with more than 100,000 sold in the state in the last four years, representing about 40 percent of the domestic plug-in market.... Read More »

 

Bosch approaches Brazil regulator over spark plug cartel

Sept. 8, 2014 14:36 CET
Bosch says it approached Brazil's antitrust authorities after discovering it had been operating a cartel in spark plugs together with Japan's NGK Spark Plug Co. "We have reported ourselves to the authorities," the supplier said.... Read More »

 

Texas governor says lower tax, regulatory hurdles lure companies such as Toyota, Tesla

7:37 am U.S. ET | Sept. 8, 2014
Texas Gov. Rick Perry, a potential presidential candidate in two years, said companies such as Toyota will invest where they’re least burdened by taxes and regulation.... Read More »

 

BEST PRACTICES

Hiking pay to get 'the pick of the crop'

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 8, 2014
Earl Stewart Toyota in Lake Park, Fla., examined its pay scale this summer. The conclusion: not high enough. So it hiked its pay scale. For the lowest-paid employees, the change meant a 38 percent jump in their hourly rate.... Read More »

 

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