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China has room for PSA's upscale DS brand

Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, Oct. 25
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PSA launched sales of its second China-built DS model, the DS 6WR crossover, last month.
PSA/Peugeot-Citroen's upscale DS brand is on track to be successful in China because of consumer demand for French luxury goods -- but it is not a serious rival to the German premium brands. French luxury goods are hot items among a burgeoning middle and upper middle class of consumers in China and DS is well positioned to offer a French-accented driving experience thousa ...
     Continue reading "China has room for PSA's upscale DS brand" » Oct 25, 2014 12:01 am U.S. ET
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Rick Case to sell first N.A. 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C for charity's sake

Posted 4:09 pm U.S. ET, Oct. 24
The first new Alfa Romeo to be sold in this country in 20 years will be auctioned next week for charity. That’s thanks to Rick and Rita Case, owners of Rick Case Automotive Group in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Rick Case says his Alfa Romeo dealership in Davie, Fla., is the first store to receive one of the highly anticipated 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C Italian supercars. It will ...
     Continue reading "Rick Case to sell first N.A. 2015 Alfa Romeo 4C for charity's sake" » Oct 24, 2014 4:09 pm U.S. ET
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Japanese automakers drive UK car industry's rebound

Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, Oct. 24
Jaguar, Rolls Royce, Land Rover, Mini, MG. The pantheon of British automakers has a storied history, but it is not exactly populated with big-volume world-beaters. And its recent history has been darkened by years of decline in which many of these household brand names were bought and sold by overseas rivals betting they could engineer a turnaround. However, Britain's lo ...
     Continue reading "Japanese automakers drive UK car industry's rebound" » Oct 24, 2014 12:01 am U.S. ET
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Why Honda is venturing into Oculus' virtual world

Posted 11:56 am U.S. ET, Oct. 23
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. -- From the back seat of an Acura MDX, I peered out at a stone house on a cliff, fields of wind-swept grass and blue butterflies close enough to touch. All of it was a mirage. In reality, I was in the parking lot of the Honda Silicon Valley Lab here. Strapped to my head was a virtual reality headset called the Oculus Rift, which looks like a pair of ...
     Continue reading "Why Honda is venturing into Oculus' virtual world" » Oct 23, 2014 11:56 am U.S. ET
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Why Daimler doesn't share investors' love affair with Tesla

Posted 9:14 am U.S. ET, Oct. 22
Are Tesla shares overvalued? If you ask Daimler, investors have gotten ahead of themselves with their exuberant love for Elon Musk’s California-based manufacturer of sporty electric cars. On Tuesday, Daimler decided to cash out on its 4 percent stake for the price of $780 million in cash (615 million euros). Not a bad haul considering the company paid almost $50 mil ...
     Continue reading "Why Daimler doesn't share investors' love affair with Tesla" » Oct 22, 2014 9:14 am U.S. ET
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Three factors in Daimler's $780M sale of Tesla stock

Posted 8:39 pm U.S. ET, Oct. 22
SAN FRANCISCO -- When Mercedes-Benz parent company Daimler AG announced late Tuesday that it had sold its 4 percent stake in Tesla Motors Inc. for a handsome $780 million, people naturally rushed for a simple explanation. Was there a business dispute? Did investors warn that Tesla’s stock was overvalued? Did the German automaker lose faith in Tesla’s future ...
     Continue reading "Three factors in Daimler's $780M sale of Tesla stock" » Oct 22, 2014 8:39 pm U.S. ET
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Why loan length doesn’t matter

Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, Oct. 22
Here’s another reason not to fret over longer loans: Their numbers are misleading. Consider these comments from Dave Mondragon, executive director of U.S. sales for Ford and Lincoln at Ford Motor Co. Speaking at Automotive News’ Best Dealerships To Work For event last week in Chicago, Mondragon noted that the most recent data show that 60 percent of all vehic ...
     Continue reading "Why loan length doesn’t matter" » Oct 22, 2014 12:01 am U.S. ET
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Why Daimler doesn't share investors' love affair with Tesla

Posted 9:14 am U.S. ET, Oct. 22
Are Tesla shares overvalued? If you ask Daimler, investors have gotten ahead of themselves with their exuberant love for Elon Musk’s California-based manufacturer of sporty electric cars. On Tuesday, Daimler decided to cash out on its 4 percent stake for the price of $780 million. Not a bad haul considering they paid almost $50 million for the stake back in May 2009 ...
     Continue reading "Why Daimler doesn't share investors' love affair with Tesla" » Oct 22, 2014 9:14 am U.S. ET
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Gen Y guru entertains, informs

Posted 4:23 pm U.S. ET, Oct. 21
Who knew that demographics could be so funny? Jason Dorsey led a room of 100 or so car dealers through a keynote address on Generation Y during Automotive News’ Best Dealerships To Work For event last week in Chicago. It was a mixture of detailed demographics, data-driven insights -- and stand-up comedy. It was so dynamic and thought-provoking that it has stuck wit ...
     Continue reading "Gen Y guru entertains, informs" » Oct 21, 2014 4:23 pm U.S. ET
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Sizing up the field for 2015 Car, Truck of Year honors

Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, Oct. 21
HELL, Mich. -- Many of the jurors who select the North American Car and Truck of the Year convened in this small town northwest of Ann Arbor last week to test drive the class of 2015. There are 22 vehicles in contention. The twisty, undulating roads to Hell, from Hell and around Hell are paved with good indentions. You can really wring out a chassis on the variety of sur ...
     Continue reading "Sizing up the field for 2015 Car, Truck of Year honors" » Oct 21, 2014 12:01 am U.S. ET
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Why Wrangler’s Toledo decision may depend on keeping the money spigot flowing

Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, Oct. 18
It’s been just over two weeks since Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne casually revealed that he might have to move Jeep Wrangler production out of its historic home in Toledo, Ohio. In his comments, Marchionne said that it would be prohibitively expensive to build an aluminum Wrangler in Toledo, if that’s what Jeep decides to do with the 2017 red ...
     Continue reading "Why Wrangler’s Toledo decision may depend on keeping the money spigot flowing" » Oct 18, 2014 12:01 am U.S. ET
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In praise of the Best Dealerships To Work For

Posted 3:07 pm U.S. ET, Oct. 17
Here’s why I love Automotive News’ annual special section and event to honor the Best Dealerships To Work For: We’re celebrating the good guys. These are the folks who give car dealers a good name. These are dealers who treat their people well. Call me naive, but I honestly believe that employees who are treated well are more likely to treat their custom ...
     Continue reading "In praise of the Best Dealerships To Work For" » Oct 17, 2014 3:07 pm U.S. ET
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Why Audi, BMW and Mercedes dominate China's luxury market

Posted 8:25 am U.S. ET, Oct. 17
In recent years a number of non-German global brands including Cadillac, Lexus and Infiniti have challenged the solid grip that Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz maintain on China's luxury car market. But until now, none of them has put any noticeable competitive pressure on the three leading brands, to say nothing about shaking their iron grasp on the market. Now comes PSA/Pe ...
     Continue reading "Why Audi, BMW and Mercedes dominate China's luxury market" » Oct 17, 2014 8:25 am U.S. ET
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Hyundai scrambles for more crossover turf

Posted 2:45 pm U.S. ET, Oct. 16
CHICAGO -- Hyundai’s no longer growing by leaps and bounds in the United States, in part because it’s only a bit player in the crossover boom. “Mix is definitely a piece of it,” Hyundai Motor America CEO Dave Zuchowski said on the sidelines of Automotive News’ Best Dealerships To Work For event here. “We’re very short on all of ou ...
     Continue reading "Hyundai scrambles for more crossover turf" » Oct 16, 2014 2:45 pm U.S. ET
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The joy of being a Jeep dealer in 2014

Posted 3:35 pm U.S. ET, Oct. 15
CHICAGO -- Holy Toledo, what's it like to be a Jeep dealer in 2014? Andy Shaver, president of the Shaver Group, just smiles when I ask. A smile that says: "Awesome and then some." "It's really great," he says. "We were just talking about this and someone said Jeep is the strongest domestic brand right now." Understatement alert! Of course, this fourth generation dealer ...
     Continue reading "The joy of being a Jeep dealer in 2014" » Oct 15, 2014 3:35 pm U.S. ET
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Visions of a paper-free auto finance world

Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, Oct. 15
What will auto finance look like in 2020? Chase Auto Finance exec Bill Jensen did some speculating last week at the Auto Finance Summit in Las Vegas. One idea he proffered was that by 2020, auto loans would be “completely paperless” -- something the auto finance industry has tried but failed to do for a couple of decades. Not only will loans be paperless, Jen ...
     Continue reading "Visions of a paper-free auto finance world" » Oct 15, 2014 12:01 am U.S. ET
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Volvo's new engine: Turbocharger? Supercharger? What is this thing?

Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, Oct. 14
Perhaps you saw the news last week about an experimental engine under development at Volvo. It’s a 2.0-liter gasoline-powered four-cylinder that cranks out an amazing 450 horsepower. At 225 horsepower per liter, it would be one of the most power-dense engines ever produced, if Volvo decides to build it. How Volvo engineers boosted the output of the engine is ingeni ...
     Continue reading "Volvo's new engine: Turbocharger? Supercharger? What is this thing?" » Oct 14, 2014 12:01 am U.S. ET
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Why Dale Pollak recommends a call center that employs blind workers

Posted 6:42 am U.S. ET, Oct. 14
CHICAGO -- Near the end of vAuto’s Access: Velocity three-day conference here, vAuto founder Dale Pollak made a very personal appeal to the 170 hand-picked dealers present. Please consider, Pollak said, signing up for call center services from a nonprofit in Orlando that employs blind and visually impaired people to handle calls for private companies. Pollak, who l ...
     Continue reading "Why Dale Pollak recommends a call center that employs blind workers" » Oct 14, 2014 6:42 am U.S. ET
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Reithofer's vision made U.S. plant into a global giant

Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, Oct. 11
BMW’s U.S. factory in Spartanburg, South Carolina, has altered so much since I visited it nearly 20 years ago that the only way I recognized it was because of the company logo. The factory has changed from being a small plant building a niche roadster into the global production base for all BMW SUVs, apart from the German-built X1. By the end of 2016, Spartanburg w ...
     Continue reading "Reithofer's vision made U.S. plant into a global giant" » Oct 11, 2014 12:01 am U.S. ET
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Crash recorder video craze hits Japan

Posted 11:45 am U.S. ET, Oct. 10
TOKYO -- Count Japan as the latest entrant to the dash cam craze. Across the country, drivers are uploading and swapping video footage taken through their vehicle crash data recorders. But these videos aren’t gruesome scenes of blood and twisted metal. They capture romantic sunsets, lonesome country roads, neon-lit streetscapes and the occasional scary near miss. ...
     Continue reading "Crash recorder video craze hits Japan" » Oct 10, 2014 11:45 am U.S. ET
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In Chicago, Cox execs hear dealers' concerns -- and praise

Posted 10:26 pm U.S. ET, Oct. 9
CHICAGO -- vAuto’s Access: Velocity conference here has been an eye-opening experience for the senior management of Cox Automotive -- formerly the AutoTrader Group -- as well as the 160 dealers who are attending by invitation only. Executives from AutoNation, Mullinax Group and scores of other dealerships have both lauded Cox Automotive for the things it does right ...
     Continue reading "In Chicago, Cox execs hear dealers' concerns -- and praise" » Oct 9, 2014 10:26 pm U.S. ET
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Sergio has been the glue that kept Fiat Chrysler intact

Posted 3:16 pm U.S. ET, Oct. 8
Sergio Marchionne’s declaration that he will leave his job as head of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles at the end of 2018 sent my memory back nearly a decade to an ornate love fest in Las Vegas. In November 2005, Chrysler Group dealers of what was then DaimlerChrysler said an affectionate goodbye to Dieter Zetsche, who was heading back to Germany to lead the parent company ...
     Continue reading "Sergio has been the glue that kept Fiat Chrysler intact" » Oct 8, 2014 3:16 pm U.S. ET
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Subprime is no runaway train

Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, Oct. 8
There it goes again, as Ronald Reagan might have said. The New York Times is still hammering a theme that subprime auto loans will endanger the U.S. economy in the way that subprime mortgages helped bring about the Great Recession. In an article last week -- the latest of several on subprime auto loans -- the paper said “some of the same dynamics” that led to ...
     Continue reading "Subprime is no runaway train" » Oct 8, 2014 12:01 am U.S. ET
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What's in a name? Cadillac CT6 creates fervor

Posted 12:01 am U.S. ET, Oct. 7
MGB. 500. 280SL. G8. XK120. 2002Tii. TR6. 318is. 2CV. 300TD. XLR. GT6. Car names derived from letters, numbers, and letters and numbers have been with us since at least the 1950s. The blowback from Cadillac’s recent announcement that it will name its big new sedan CT6 has been hurricane force on GM’s luxury brand boss Johan de Nysschen. Why the big fuss? On ...
     Continue reading "What's in a name? Cadillac CT6 creates fervor" » Oct 7, 2014 12:01 am U.S. ET
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Carlos and Dieter show goes from strength to strength

Posted 5:34 am U.S. ET, Oct. 6
Dieter Zetsche and Carlos Ghosn believe they are no longer needed to ensure the long-term continuation of the industrial partnership between Daimler and the Renault-Nissan alliance. The two CEOs dispelled speculation that the partnership could crumble once they are not around to instill a sense of unity in their teams. Zetsche said the alliance was dependent on cooperati ...
     Continue reading "Carlos and Dieter show goes from strength to strength" » Oct 6, 2014 5:34 am U.S. ET
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