Headlines for Friday, January 4, 2013

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VIDEO: First Shift: December winners, losers

12:01 am U.S. ET | Jan. 4, 2013
Led by Porsche, European automakers sweep the top five spots; Mitsubishi at bottom again; Tesla victory; a hope for Opel?

BMW uses big Dec. gain to win U.S. luxury sales race

Jan. 4, 2013 06:01 CET
BMW sales surged 39 percent in December, powered by the 5-series car line, helping it top Mercedes-Benz in luxury-brand sales in the United States for the second consecutive year. Sales for BMW increased to 37,399 vehicles last month, boosted by a 72 percent gain for its mid-sized 5 series.

Fiat exercises options to up stake in Chrysler to 65%

Jan. 4, 2013 06:01 CET
Fiat plans to boost its stake in Chrysler Group to 65 percent by exercising its option to purchase an additional 3.3 percent from the UAW's retiree health-care fund.

Mercedes' global sales hit record in 2012 on U.S. demand

7:46 am U.S. ET | Jan. 4, 2013
Sales of Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz luxury brand reached a record in 2012 as rising U.S. demand offset a weaker market in China and pushed December volumes to an all-time high.

Coda furloughs workers in new wave of cost cuts

6:31 pm U.S. ET | Jan. 4, 2013
In another sign of Coda Automotive's financial woes, the assembler of Chinese-made electric vehicles furloughed employees Friday, its second round of cost-cutting in the last month.

New Mazda6 to carry base price of $21,675, up $155

2:46 pm U.S. ET | Jan. 4, 2013
Mazda set the starting price of the redesigned 2014 Mazda6 mid-sized sedan at $21,675, including shipping, making it one of the least expensive family sedans in the U.S. market. The base price represents an increase of $155 over the 2013 model.

Ford sells 239 acres at former Michigan plant site to developer

3:58 pm U.S. ET | Jan. 4, 2013
Ford has sold 239 acres at a former assembly plant in suburban Detroit to Trident Barrow Management, a unit of Barrow Development of New York. The sprawling plant located northwest of Detroit in Wixom, Mich., opened in 1957 and closed in 2007.

Canada to invest $254 million in auto industry to spur jobs

1:43 pm U.S. ET | Jan. 4, 2013
Canada will invest $253.69 million in the country's auto industry, Prime Minister Stephen Harper said on Friday, as Ottawa tries to encourage private sector investment and create manufacturing jobs.

VIDEO: AutoNews Now: Greener, but is it safe?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Jan. 4, 2013
GM stands by Earth-friendly refrigerant as Daimler, VW shun; how BMW beat Benz; Lapham: A new normal for sales?

2012 fuel economy rises to 23.8 mpg, researchers say

2:34 pm U.S. ET | Jan. 4, 2013
The average fuel economy of new vehicles sold in 2012 rose to 23.8 mpg, University of Michigan researchers said today, up from 22.5 mpg in 2011 and the highest since the researchers began tracking full-year data in 2008.

AutoNation sees U.S. industry sales of 15.5 million in 2013

2:23 pm U.S. ET | Jan. 4, 2013
A stabilized housing market and strengthening economy will drive U.S. auto sales to the mid-15 million unit range in 2013, AutoNation CEO Mike Jackson said today.

In China, automakers brace for tepid growth as Japanese struggle

11:37 am U.S. ET | Jan. 4, 2013
Automakers in China are bracing for another year of tepid single-digit growth in 2013, weighed down by sluggish demand for Japanese cars amid a diplomatic row between the two regional neighbors and government measures intended to restrict traffic in bigger cities.

GM recalls more than 69,000 trucks, vans that could roll away

10:02 am U.S. ET | Jan. 4, 2013
GM is recalling more than 69,000 full-sized trucks and vans globally that could roll away after being parked due to a potential steering column defect, the automaker said on Friday.

Mazda to boost Mexican plant's capacity to 230,000

12:04 am U.S. ET | Jan. 4, 2013
Mazda said capacity at the plant it's building in Mexico that will also make cars for Toyota will be 21 percent larger than planned.

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