Headlines for Wednesday, September 11, 2013

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Japanese supplier exec indicted in U.S. in latest price-fixing case

3:31 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
A Japanese auto supplier executive was charged today in federal court with price fixing and bid rigging for speed-sensor wire assemblies his company sold to Toyota for vehicles made in the United States and elsewhere.

ALG reduces residuals on EVs, plug-in hybrids

2:32 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
ALG, citing high incentives, recent price cuts and a potential glut of models, has cut residual values for electric vehicles, plug-in hybrids and conventional hybrids in its latest residual value guide -- chief among them the all battery powered Nissan Leaf.

VIDEO: AutoNews Now: Daimler's Chrysler lesson

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Zetsche contrasts failed merger, Renault-Nissan deal; Rattner on Delphi pensions; Tesla battery plight; Pope's new old wheels.

UAW: Majority of workers at VW plant in Tenn. have signed union cards

4:42 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
A majority of workers at Volkswagen's assembly plant in Tennessee have signed union cards favoring UAW representation in creating a German-style works council at the factory, union officials say.

BMW will fix supply-chain delays by month's end, execs say

Sept. 11, 2013 06:01 CET
BMW says it will resolve a supply chain problem that has delayed the global delivery of spare parts to some customers by the end of this month.

Mercedes E250 rated at 28/45 mpg

2:54 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
The 2014 Mercedes-Benz E250 Bluetec has received an estimated EPA rating of 28 mpg city/45 highway.

VIDEO: First Shift: Making VW 'laughingstock'?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
UAW move could create domino effect, senator says; Nissan X-Trail, BMW X5 hit the stage; Snyder on Scion's survival.

Daimler to add Renault-Nissan Fuso vans to global cooperation

12:07 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Daimler AG and Renault SA are expanding their global cooperation to include commercial vans made in Japan as the manufacturers continue to identify new projects together.

Continental to partner with IBM on autonomous driving systems

Sept. 11, 2013 06:01 CET
German supplier Continental said it was teaming up with IBM, the world's biggest technology services company, on systems used for driverless cars.

Ford didn't breach truck dealer contracts, Ohio jury rules

4:49 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Ford didn't breach pricing contracts with commercial truck dealers, a Cleveland jury found in the retrial of a case that previously resulted in a $2 billion judgment against the company.

GM rightly favored Delphi UAW pensions over salaried, Rattner says

10:13 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Steven Rattner, the former auto czar who led the government bailout of General Motors and Chrysler, says GM was right to boost pensions of hourly retirees at Delphi while cutting off salaried retirees because it had previously fully funded the salaried retirees' pensions and needed to avoid...


VW pushes to get natural gas into U.S. cars

5:37 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Volkswagen AG wants to join Honda Motor Co. in selling compressed natural gas-fueled cars in the United States, but first it wants the U.S. government to help get more CNG pumps at fueling stations.

Ford board adds 2 CEOs with global design, science, sustainability expertise

4:20 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Ford today named Steelcase CEO James Hackett and John Lechleiter, CEO of pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly & Company, to the automaker's board of directors.


Laser headlights? Don't hold your breath

5:18 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Automakers have been teasing us with demonstrations of laser headlights, but you shouldn't hold your breath.


JCI targets mild, micro hybrids with compact lithium ion battery

3:00 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
A new compact, lightweight 48-volt lithium ion battery from supplier Johnson Controls debuting today at the Frankfurt auto show is small enough to fit under the hood of most vehicles and powerful enough to run an air conditioner.

Mercedes, Nokia team up on smart maps for connected cars

2:34 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Nokia says it has partnered with Mercedes-Benz, on a trial basis, to develop smart maps for connected vehicles and eventually self-driving cars.

BMW 'Boss' SUV targets Mercedes to defend luxury crown

9:19 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
After seeing its biggest SUV outsold by the Mercedes-Benz M-Class last year, BMW is fighting back with a model it calls "The Boss," a new version of its X5 stuffed with advanced technology.


A glimpse at some imaginary future Fords and Lincolns

12:45 pm U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Ford introduced a new sub-brand at the Frankfurt auto show this week. It’s called Vignale, named for a revered Italian coachbuilder. Seeing the Vignale concept vehicles got me thinking about other Ford fantasy vehicles.


A Nissan concept to watch

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Nissan took infotainment connectivity to a new level by unveiling a wristwatch at the Frankfurt auto show that can receive driving data from a car and biometric reactions from its driver.

Chrysler Capital helps drive sales, dealers say

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Chrysler Capital is stepping up to the plate and delivering vehicle sales, Chrysler Group and its dealers say.

GM's sales chief is bullish on leasing

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
GM's U.S. sales chief is counting on an uptick in leasing to boost customer retention and dealers' supplies of recent-model used cars.


Volkswagen mulls launching commercial vehicles in U.S.

5:57 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Volkswagen may launch commercial vehicles in the United States as part of steps to expand its core namesake brand in the world's No. 2 auto market.


Nissan captive boosts business with dealers' help

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Nissan's U.S. market share has been climbing for the past few years -- and Nissan's U.S. captive finance arm, Nissan Motor Acceptance Corp., has been rising with it.


Lenders face risk in ignoring CFPB

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Auto lenders are in no hurry to eliminate the dealer reserve, even though the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau indicated almost six months ago it would like to see lenders switch to flat fees.

Survey: What dealerships say

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
More customers are using their smartphones in the F&I office. And it’s not just Gen Y, according to results from a recent online survey of dealers and F&I managers by Automotive News. Here’s a look at the numbers.

54% of Gen Y online shoppers open to buying any brand, J.D. Power finds

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
More than half of Gen Y online shoppers are open to buying any brand at the beginning of the shopping process, according to a new J.D. Power and Associates study released this week.

Maserati sees sales jumping to 16,000 this year

Sept. 11, 2013 15:42 CET
Maserati expects sales to jump to about 16,000 cars this year from 6,300 last year, driven by demand for its new Quattroporte and Ghibli models.


Auto executives more downbeat than desperate

Sept. 11, 2013 13:00 CET
Two years ago, at the last Frankfurt auto show, the big story was the unraveling euro zone crisis and its effect on the auto industry. Now the crisis is subsiding, but the caution remains.


Renault will launch upscale Initiale Paris line in China

Sept. 11, 2013 11:19 CET
Renault will sell upscale vehicles under its new Initiale Paris badge in China as well as Europe to compete with French rival Citroen's DS line.


A Nissan concept to watch

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
Nissan took infotainment connectivity to a new level by unveiling a wristwatch at the Frankfurt auto show that can receive driving data from a car and biometric reactions from its driver.

Rolls-Royce mulls SUV to challenge Bentley

Sept. 11, 2013 12:34 CET
Rolls-Royce is considering following other ultra-luxury brands including Bentley and Maserati in adding an SUV to its lineup. Rolls-Royce has asked designers draw up sketches as a first step, CEO Torsten Mueller-Oetvoes said.


Taking a peek inside China's Changan

12:01 am U.S. ET | Sept. 11, 2013
China's Changan is moving fast but cautiously, according to a top executive with the automaker whose partners include Ford, PSA and Mazda.

Renault's new co-chiefs pledge to focus on devising growth project

Sept. 11, 2013 06:01 CET
Renault's two new top executives will focus on completing the automaker's strategy for boosting cash flow and sales growth "We will finalize the 2014-2016 plan before the end of the year," said Thierry Bollore, chief competitive officer.


Porsche 918 hybrid beats Toyota Prius as supercars go green

Sept. 11, 2013 06:01 CET
Porsche and BMW are among carmakers who have unveiled new sports cars that are not only fast but also greener as fuel efficiency becomes a key standard even for supercars.

VW's Winterkorn says Europe should close 10 factories

Sept. 11, 2013 08:14 CET
Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn said the European auto industry needs to close around 10 factories to reduce overcapacity caused by the region's slumping car market.

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