Headlines for Monday, November 19, 2012

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AutoNation's health bus saves lives, money

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
In July, Gene Clayton was ordered to the hospital after a health care screening found troubling symptoms. He's among scores of AutoNation Inc. employees who got wake-up calls when the retailer's Know Your Numbers Health Bus rolled into town.


Turkey counts on autos to drive economic growth

Nov. 19, 2012 06:01 CET
Turkey's auto industry is one of the great growth stories of the past decade. The nation's government aims to triple vehicle production over the next decade. The plan is to make the nation one of the world's 10 largest economies by 2023, the 100th anniversary of the Turkish Republic.

VIDEO: AutoNews Now: Sandy's used-car impact

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
In echo of Katrina, superstorm churns up prices; AutoNation luxury outlet; General Motors steps up China's cheap-car race.

Dealers snap up natural gas pickups

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Some auto dealers are eagerly ordering new natural gas-powered pickups for individual and fleet buyers amid low prices for the fuel.

Focus ST marketer: Not your typical car guy

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
In the not-too-distant past, a guy like Filipp Gorelik would have been a complete alien in the often-insular world of Detroit car marketers. That's because Gorelik, 29, has Europhile tastes. But Gorelik's tastes make him a http://edit.autonews.com/apps/pbcsedit.

VIDEO: First Shift: Betting on natural gas

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
General Motors, Chrysler try retail sales of CNG trucks; General Motors, Ally; NHTSA exec going to Google.

Penske gets his first NASCAR Sprint Cup title as team owner

3:05 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Brad Keselowski won his first NASCAR Sprint Cup title on Sunday -- along with Roger Penske's first cup title as a team owner -- with a 15th place finish in the final race of the year at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Florida.


Auto dealers say Google's imperial approach is risky

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Auto dealers are losing patience with the often imperial ways of Google and beginning to look elsewhere for online vehicle shoppers David Barkholz is a reporter for Automotive News.


Audi to expand diesel option to A8, A7, A6 and Q5

4:17 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Audi will begin offering 3.0-liter V-6 diesel engines in the A8, A7 and A6 cars and the Q5 crossover beginning next year. The four TDI diesel-equipped models will make their debuts next week at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

Illinois Tool Works CEO Speer dies at 61

12:53 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Illinois Tool Works CEO David Speer has died, the company said. He was 61. COO E. Scott Santi, 51, was named the permanent CEO today after being chosen the acting CEO last month, the company said in a statement.

Bill Ford: Fiscal cliff agreement 'vitally important'

1:36 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
A deal between President Barack Obama and Congress to avoid the fiscal cliff is critical to the United States economy’s health and to Ford Motor, the company’s executive chairman said today.

Maine dealer gets help from neighbors, strangers after fire

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Wednesday, Oct. 3, started out like any other morning at Valley Auto in Fort Kent, Maine. Dealer Carl Theriault talked to customers in his showroom as business buzzed around him. Then, around 8:30, Theriault heard someone in his parts department yell: "Fire! Fire!"

Honda, despite Sandy's impact, still expects 25% U.S. sales gain for 2012

11:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Honda's rebound in the United States will continue through 2012’s final months, helping the carmaker boost sales about 25 percent this year even after Hurricane Sandy reduced October gains, said sales chief John Mendel.

Subaru maker benefits from its failed expansion plan in China

10:47 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Fuji Heavy Industries President Yasuyuki Yoshinaga has become a market darling for something he failed to do: build a factory in China.

Schaeffler recruits veteran GM exec as India CEO

Nov. 19, 2012 10:20 CET
German supplier Schaeffler Group has named Dharmesh Arora, a former General Motors executive, as head of its operations in India.

Daimler takes full control of Mercedes F-1 team

Nov. 19, 2012 11:25 CET
Daimler has taken full control of the Mercedes Formula One motor racing team after buying a 40 percent stake from a Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund for an undisclosed sum.

Keeping Shelby alive

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Carroll Shelby, the wild-spirited 89-year-old racing icon and king of thundering garage hot rods, lay on his deathbed last May struggling to talk. He urged his younger friend and business partner John Luft to lean closer. "Keep Shelby American alive," Shelby strained to tell Luft in his final hours.


Facebook photos of dunked Land Rover get salesman fired, but NLRB finds hot dog criticism is protected speech

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
The issue for dealers: Many marketers view social media as a good way for salespeople to engage customers, establish a following and build sales. But salespeople need to behave within limits to protect dealerships' reputations.


China's new leaders should not coddle Chinese carmakers

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
China's new leaders are beset by economic crises, so the auto industry may struggle to receive consideration. But the leaders should do one big thing: Stop favoring state-owned companies at the expense of their private rivals Yang Jian is managing editor of Automotive News China.


America has lots of oil? Now what do we do?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Four years after the auto industry started trembling at the real prospect of a global fuel shortage and painful pump prices, this news arrives: There's way more oil under America than we realized. Oops Lindsay Chappell is Mid-South bureau chief for Automotive News.


We need answers from Hyundai, Kia

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Did anyone at Hyundai or Kia know about the inflation of mileage figures? It is important for Hyundai to explain whether anyone knew about the mileage figures Keith Crain is editor-in-chief of Automotive News.

Leaner suppliers win pricing power

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
With North American vehicle production headed toward 15 million-plus units next year, automakers are encountering a new breed of supplier: the one that says "no."

Used-car demand up after Sandy

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Since Hurricane Sandy ravaged tens of thousands of vehicles on the East Coast, used-vehicle pricing and demand are headed in a familiar, post-disaster direction: higher and higher.

Factory frenzy: Japanese add N.A. capacity

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Japan's automakers are gearing up for the biggest wave of North American production expansion in a decade.

GM maps its electric strategy

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Mary Barra spent the past several months with her team mulling a future electrification strategy for General Motors before reaching this conclusion: GM can't chase every fuel-saving technology out there.

Advertising hall of fame inducts Rance Crain

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Rance Crain, president of Crain Communications Inc., has been inducted into the American Advertising Federation's Advertising Hall of Fame.


GAZ Group's Andersson to address Congress

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Bo Andersson, CEO of Russia's GAZ Group and former purchasing chief at General Motors, will be a dinner keynote speaker on Jan. 15, the first day of the 2013 Automotive News World Congress.

Dec. sales teeter on fiscal cliff

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Industrywide, the last 10 days before New Year's Eve are usually some of the best for car sales. But dealers are bracing for the possibility that a protracted fight in Washington over tax increases and spending cuts could keep some consumers out of showrooms this holiday season.

Toyota's 'adult playground'

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Playing the global financial markets is often compared to high-stakes gambling, so it's no surprise that Toyota Financial Services' treasury department looks like a scaled-down Las Vegas sports book.

Dealers drawn to Energi

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Ford Motor Co. is surprised by how many dealers are seeking approval to sell its first plug-in hybrid, the C-Max Energi -- and in which markets.

Honda Civic's interior makeover debuts in L.A.

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Eighteen months after the redesigned 2012 Civic's interior layout and materials were greeted with a chorus of boos, Honda engineers are back with the fix.

Lincoln's new structure, ads take shape

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
At a Lincoln dealer meeting in Las Vegas this month, Ford Motor Co. top brass addressed nearly 1,000 dealers and sales managers, introduced the luxury brand's new management lineup and showed a brand-positioning video that delineated what Lincoln wants to be and what customers it wants to attract.

Suzuki dealers get a voice in bankruptcy court

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Some of Suzuki's largest dealers and its advertising agency have joined forces on a committee of unsecured creditors in American Suzuki's Chapter 11 bankruptcy case.


Minor brands need more than solid products

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
American Suzuki's recent filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and wind-down of its U.S. automotive business offer an opportunity to assess the landscape for the three small Japanese brands in the United States. They present a striking contrast. Subaru is thriving. Mitsubishi is struggling.

2013 MKZ sets the tone for future Lincolns

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Here's what the new mid-sized Lincoln MKZ is: a sleek, technology-rich sedan with a fresh appearance inside and out. It is aimed at the kind of young luxury-car buyers who have ignored Lincoln for decades.

Fiat rises, yet profits elude many dealers

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
A year after Chrysler Group hit the reset button on the botched launch of its Fiat 500, more than half of the brand's 183 dealerships in the United States have turned a profit.

M-B's ex-U.S. boss loses wrongful dismissal suit

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
A German court has rejected a wrongful dismissal lawsuit brought by former Mercedes-Benz USA boss Ernst Lieb against the brand's parent, Daimler.

Toyota unveils pair of precrash safety systems

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Toyota Motor Corp. is rolling out two precrash safety systems that it says will help prevent high-speed collisions and pedal-misapplication accidents. The technology will debut soon in a high-end Toyota-brand sedan.


12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Information about Tom Burns, former executive director of administration and planning for Ford Motor Co.'s styling and design center.


From Porsche to pizza and pasta

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Wendelin Wiedeking, whose celebrated 16-year run as Porsche's CEO came to a bad end in 2009, has gone into the pizza and pasta business.


Mitsubishi hopes to pay dividend -- for a change

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
The year 1997 was also the most recent year that Mitsubishi Motors paid a dividend. Now, President Osamu Masuko wants to change that.


If Aston's for sale, who wants to buy?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Aston Martin, the British luxury brand that James Bond favors, is on the selling block, according to Bloomberg. So who are the potential bidders?


Chinese buyers don't love Cadillac's edgy, angular styling

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 19, 2012
Cadillac's art-and-science design look -- the sharp, angular lines and creased edges -- is a turnoff in China. And that is leading to a change in the brand's design direction.