Headlines for Wednesday, November 14, 2012

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Tata denies report on alliance talks with PSA

Nov. 14, 2012 13:14 CET
Tata denied a report on Wednesday that it is in talks to set up an alliance with PSA. "That is absolutely incorrect," Tata spokesman Debasis Ray told Reuters.


Are Korean automakers winning the right way in Europe?

Nov. 14, 2012 06:01 CET
While struggling European carmakers reduce production and consider plant closures, Hyundai and affiliate Kia are reporting record sales. The Korean brands attribute buoyant sales to their lean organizations and modestly priced, desirable new cars. Others disagree.

Chrysler, Ford join Toyota in opposing Mexico's fuel economy, emissions proposal

6:58 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
Mexico's first fuel economy standard, nearly three years in the making, is stalled because of challenges from Toyota, Ford, Chrysler Group and other automakers. Nom-163, aligned with the U.S.

Chrysler in talks to tap Santander as preferred financing provider, report says

4:34 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
Chrysler Group is in exclusive talks with Banco Santander to make its U.S. unit the automaker's preferred financing provider, people familiar with the matter said. Chrysler entered a 30-day negotiating period with the lender, which would be the U.S.

VIDEO: AutoNews Now: Ghosn's advice for U.S.

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
U.S. needs an energy policy, Nissan CEO says; safety board 'wishes' for technology mandate; plus, Toyota's age-defying Avalon.

VIDEO: First Shift: 670,000 U.S. Prius recall

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
As Toyota agrees to settlement over prior recalls, it will call back 2.8M vehicles globally; Audi upbeat; GM's Disney redesign.

Mexico, Argentina in preliminary pact to resume auto free trade

11:54 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
Mexican automakers said on Wednesday they had reached a preliminary agreement with counterparts in Argentina to resume free trade in vehicles, but both urged their governments to begin a formal dialogue to settle remaining differences.

Exec says Toyota expects U.S. share to recover to 15% in 2013

2:18 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
Toyota Motor Sales expects its market share in the United States to return to above 15 percent in 2013 when a string of redesigned vehicles arrives. Toyota is still recovering market share that fell during the inventory shortages after last year's earthquake and tsunami in Japan.


Time to brace for the luxury rush

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
For the past 10 years or so, December has become the biggest sales month of the year for luxury brands. But it seems as if those brands' year-end sales pushes start earlier every year.

Ford sees margins shrinking as buyers shift to small cars

4:06 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
Ford said its record profit margins are shrinking in North America as buyers downsize from trucks to small cars. The shift will reduce Ford’s North American margins to 8 percent to 10 percent over time, down from 12 percent in the third quarter.

GM Financial taps DataScan, Openlane.com to remarket off-lease vehicles

3:44 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
General Motors Financial will tap DataScan Field Services and ADESA auction company’s Openlane.com to help dealerships process off-lease vehicles starting in December, the financial company said today.

GM will focus on plug-ins and EVs, but not hybrids

2:09 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
General Motors' future green-car efforts will focus on plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles, rather than conventional hybrid powertrains, product chief Mary Barra said today.

Penske buys two Wisconsin dealerships

2:44 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
Penske Automotive has acquired two Wisconsin dealerships for an undisclosed amount. Jon Lancaster Toyota Scion and Lexus of Madison are expected to contribute about $130 million in annual revenue, Penske Automotive said in a release.

Rance Crain to be inducted into Advertising Hall of Fame

12:32 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
Rance Crain, editor-in-chief of Advertising Age and president of Crain Communications Inc., the parent company of Automotive News, has been named to the American Advertising Federation's 64th annual Advertising Hall of Fame.

GM to recall 15,575 cars, including Cadillac XTS, to fix safety flaws

10:16 am U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
General Motors said it is recalling 15,575 Cadillac, Buick and Chevrolet cars -- including Cadillac's new flagship sedan, the XTS -- to correct potential safety flaws.

Relaxed lending, wider credit can propel U.S. car sales only so far, economists warn

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
A rebound in U.S. auto sales has been buoyed by the return of easy lending, even to borrowers with flawed credit histories. But some economists question whether the gains can be sustained without a boost in hiring.

Toyota plans to export U.S.-made Venzas to South Korea

11:51 am U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
Toyota plans to export its Kentucky-built Venza crossover to South Korea, the first time the vehicle will be sold outside North America. Venza exports are forecast to be about 600 units annually, said Bob Carter, Toyota senior vice president of automotive operations.

Pitching F&I after customers leave store

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
At what point should F&I managers stop pitching F&I products and take a customer's “no” for an answer? A panel of five F&I managers at a conference in September said it takes at least three or four “nos” to convince them that a customer really can't be persuaded.


N.J. store predicts upsurge in GAP after Sandy

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
Hurricane Sandy and a snowstorm a week later eventually will generate business for the F&I department and other profit centers at Freehold Buick-GMC in central New Jersey. But for now, Chris Bell, finance director for the store, says the emphasis is on cleanup.

NTSB says feds should require more vehicle safety features

11:24 am U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
Federal regulators should require all passenger and commercial vehicles sold in the United States to use technology such as adaptive cruise control, automatic braking and electronic stability control to reduce the number of deadly driving accidents, the National Transportation Safety Board said...

New World Omni chief has banks, airline, AutoNation on resume

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
World Omni Financial Corp., parent of Southeast Toyota Finance and other auto financial services companies, last week named Dan Chait president.

Tenneco, ZF play key roles in new Mercedes C-class coupe's handling

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 14, 2012
ZF Friedrichshafen and Tenneco make significant contributions to the ride and handling of the new Mercedes C-class coupe. ZF, of Germany, supplies the car's standard McPherson spring struts on the front and the rear dampers.

Delphi completes acquisition of French connectors unit

Nov. 14, 2012 06:01 CET
Delphi Automotive has completed the $982 million acquisition of FCI Group's Motorized Vehicles Division, which supplies connectors.

Lamborghini CEO says ultraluxury car demand won't grow in 2013

Nov. 14, 2012 06:01 CET
Lamborghini CEO Stephan Winkelmann said global demand for ultraluxury sports cars will probably not increase next year as the European debt crisis drags on and China's economy slows.

Stadler says Audi to hit 2012 global sales goal despite Europe's slump

Nov. 14, 2012 06:01 CET
Audi, the world's second-largest maker of luxury cars, said it's on track to reach a goal of selling a record 1.4 million vehicles in 2012 and expects the momentum to continue into next year.

Visteon opens design center in India

Nov. 14, 2012 06:01 CET
Visteon has opened a design center in Pune, India. The facility, part of a Visteon engineering center, will house experts in human-machine interface, plus engineers, program managers and market researchers.

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