Headlines for Wednesday, June 26, 2013

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AutoNews Now: Ford ties, but no free rides

Seven descendants of Henry Ford working at the family firm; GM's Akerson: No backsliding on quality; Mazda3 coming in fall. Read More »


Opel strategy chief Sedran will head Chevrolet Europe

Opel strategy chief Thomas Sedran will be the new head of Chevrolet and Cadillac in Europe. Sedran faces a tough task boosting Chevrolet's falling sales in the crisis-hit region. Read More »


Opel names former consumer goods exec Mueller to run marketing

Opel named Tina Mueller, a former Henkel executive, to run the brand's marketing. Mueller's experience in the brand-driven consumer goods industry will have a major impact on the automaker, the company said Read More »


W.Va. dealer challenges feds on Obamacare mandate

A West Virginia Chevy dealer is suing several federal departments and administrators responsible for the Affordable Care Act, alleging the law violates his beliefs by requiring him to provide insurance coverage for contraceptives taken after sex. Read More »


Germany seeks to block EU auto CO2 emissions deal, sources say

Germany is working to block a compromise deal that would impose a tougher CO2 emissions limit for all new cars in the European Union starting in 2020. Read More »


First Shift: Dealer's 'abortion pill' protest

'Faith-based' Chevy store sues over insurance law; Mulally takes Japan fight to D.C.; Toyota's space robot; Caddy XTS turbo. Read More »


Akerson warns GM employees not to 'backslide' on quality

General Motors CEO Dan Akerson today warned employees not to "backslide" on quality, a week after the automaker topped a benchmark quality ranking for the first time. Akerson also promoted Alicia Boler-Davis to senior vice president, heading up global quality and customer experience. Read More »


Bill Ford nearly doubles stake in Ford's supervoting shares

Bill Ford Jr., executive chairman of Ford Motor, nearly doubled his holdings in a special class of supervoting shares that gives the Ford family more sway over the automaker's direction. Read More »


GM plans to invest $691 million for Mexican expansion

GM outlined plans on Wednesday for investing $691 million to expand its Mexican operations, including the previously unannounced expansion of its Toluca engine plant. Read More »


Cadillac gets new design chief; Adams returns to Europe

GM is shuffling its design executives for the second time in a year, promoting the lead designer for the Holden brand in Australia to the top design job at Cadillac and Buick. Read More »


Bill blocking Tesla Web sales on hold in N.C. Legislature

Legislation that would block Tesla Motors from using the Internet to sell its electric cars in North Carolina is on the back burner for now. But a legislative maneuver has cleared the way for a vote on other dealer-franchise matters. Read More »


Mazda: Revamped 2014 Mazda3 to lead compact segment in mpg

Mazda's next-generation Mazda3, equipped with its full set of technologies developed to reduce weight and enhance fuel efficiency, will top the compact segment in fuel economy when it goes on sale in the United States in September, the automaker said today. Read More »


Nissan spurned by Ohio court in dealer termination case

A state appeals court in Ohio has sided with a local Nissan dealer's argument that Chevrolet's unusual popularity in his market makes Nissan's sales expectations for him unrealistic. Read More »


Customer Incentives

This is data compiled by the Automotive News Data Center and requires a Data Center subscription to access. Read More »


New Hampshire dealer bill signed into law

Over automakers' objections, New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan has signed into law legislation that dealers in the state say will bolster protections from factory controls, particularly in the areas of dealership renovations and warranty work payments. Read More »


Why the Corolla is so popular -- even in Afghanistan

No doubt about it, Americans love the Toyota Corolla. But there's one place that might adore the car even more: Afghanistan. Read More »


Lending bias guidelines 'unrealistic,' Republicans tell CFPB

Auto lending reforms sought by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau could hurt consumers, congressional Republicans are warning. Read More »


Industry will lose respected opponent when Hackett exits CFPB

Groups representing auto lenders and dealers don't like much about the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. But at least they knew there was somebody at the CFPB who had walked a mile in their shoes: Assistant Director Rick Hackett. Now Hackett has said he's leaving. Read More »

Deep subprime lending continues to thaw

Deep subprime lending is finally in recovery mode. The deep subprime category accounted for 11 percent of all outstanding auto loans in the first quarter of 2013, up slightly from 10.7 percent a year earlier, Experian says. Read More »

Delinquencies up as subprime, loan amounts grow

The rise in auto loan delinquencies in the first quarter reflects ongoing growth in subprime and an increase in the amount consumers are borrowing, credit bureau TransUnion said this week. Read More »


A tip on selling F&I to Gen Y

Here's a highlight from this month's Automotive News F&I Week. Replays of all six Webinars from the online conference are available for free at fandiweek.com. Read More »


Why women make good F&I managers

Why should there be more women behind the F&I desk at dealerships? The biggest reason is that they connect better with other women, especially female customers, said speakers this month during Automotive News F&I Week, a series of six Webinars. Read More »


Nexteer delays $325 million stock offering in Hong Kong, report says

Nexteer Automotive Group, the Michigan auto supplier controlled by China’s biggest aerospace company, postponed an initial public offering in Hong Kong, two people with knowledge of the matter told Bloomberg. Read More »

Toyota, Honda get improved credit outlooks from Moody's

Toyota and Honda had their credit-rating outlook raised by Moody's Investors Service, which cited the Japanese carmakers' recovery from natural disasters and the benefits of a weaker yen. Read More »


Bosch opens second proving ground in China

Bosch has opened a second proving ground in China, which will allow the supplier to test antilock brakes, electronic stability control systems, as well as driver assistance technology for passenger vehicles, motorcycles and trucks. Read More »


Britain's Morgan opens first Beijing dealership

Morgan Motor has opened its first dealership in Beijing. The showroom is near Bentley and Lotus dealerships. Read More »


Chrysler Capital off to a strong start

Chrysler Capital, the lender created this year by Santander Consumer USA and Chrysler Group, is already the top loan writer at Chrysler dealerships. Chrysler Capital, now Chrysler's preferred finance provider, gives Chrysler dealerships a stronger lineup of loan choices for car shoppers. Read More »


Renault pushes Twingo upscale; will drop 3-door version

Renault has high hopes for its new Twingo minicar, which will switch to a five-door layout in a move that may help the automaker win customers downsizing from larger vehicles. Read More »


Ford says its China sales growth will outpace industry

Ford, the fastest-growing major foreign automaker in China this year, said its sales gain will outpace the industry in 2013 as customers buy new models. Read More »

Recession shuffled credit deck

Subprime customers who were prime-risk before the recession are a profitable, reliable niche, dealers and lenders say. Read More »


BMW Financial expands e-contracting to Mini

BMW Group Financial Services will expand its e-contracting system to Mini dealers in four states -- New York, California, Texas and Virginia -- by the end of this year. The system already is in use in the four states for BMW dealerships. Read More »

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