Headlines for Monday, April 21, 2014

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Iacocca links Mustang's lines to Mark I

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
With the 50th anniversary of the Mustang, discussion and debate rages anew about the design of the original pony car.

NHTSA closes 4-year probe into Saturn Ion power steering problems

9:19 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Safety regulators closed a four-year probe into power steering problems in almost 335,000 older Saturn Ions after General Motors Co recalled the cars, which are also part of an unrelated recall of defective ignition switches linked to at least 13 deaths.

Ford will soon name Fields next CEO, replacing Mulally, Bloomberg reports

2:10 pm U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Ford plans to name Mark Fields its next chief executive and disclose when CEO Alan Mulally will retire from the company, Bloomberg reported, citing two people familiar with the pending announcement.

KEITH CRAIN

Lots of buzz in New York

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
As always, we all caught our breath after the Detroit auto show.

Manufacturers brace for the used-car flood

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
A projected increase in the supply of used vehicles will be good news for U.S. dealers who have been battling a lingering effect of the recession. But it will be a double-whammy for new-car buyers: lower value on their trade-ins and less-attractive lease terms.

VIDEO: AutoNews Now: Report: Fields next Ford CEO

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
News may come next week, sources say; UAW drops vote challenge, turns to D.C.; buy a Scion, rent a Tacoma; flash vs. crash.

Mulally overcame skepticism that a plane guy could revive Ford

6:19 pm U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
When Alan Mulally was named Ford CEO n 2006 after 37 years at Boeing, plenty of industry veterans had the same question: What does a plane guy know about the car business?

NADA board member Don Chalmers dies

1:45 pm U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Don Chalmers, an auto dealer who represented New Mexico on the board of the National Automobile Dealers Association and was chairman of NADA's government relations committee, died Sunday.

Hale works on makeover of Jag, Land Rover image

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Hundreds of employees at Jaguar Land Rover North America sport a green button saying “All In.

109,000 Mazda Tributes recalled for rust-related steering issue

12:32 pm U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Mazda is recalling 109,000 Tribute compact SUVs in the United States to address potential rusting frame parts in cold-weather states where road salt is heavily used in the winter.

VIDEO: First Shift: GM's $12 billion China bet

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Plan involves more SUVs, crossovers, luxury cars; Ford Escort comeback?; Beijing show highlights; a hint at future BMWs.

New system, but no quick fix for GM

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
When General Motors last week unveiled a new way for dealers to order parts for the ignition-system recall, it reminded dealers of a hard truth: They'll be waiting for parts -- and placating impatient customers -- at least well into the autumn.

Daimler says new Beijing plant has potential capacity to build 350,000 Mercedes cars

April 22, 2014 03:03 CET
Daimler can expand production at its Beijing plant to 350,000 vehicles a year if demand calls for it, said Rene Reif, the head of manufacturing at Beijing Benz Automotive. By the end of 2014, output in Beijing will be about 140,000 cars.

2014 BEIJING AUTO SHOW

Volkswagen New Midsize Coupe set to challenge Mercedes CLA

April 22, 2014 02:42 CET
The Volkswagen NMC (New Midsize Coupe) concept makes official the carmaker's plans for a style-led sedan to challenge the Mercedes-Benz CLA.

Ford will soon name Fields next CEO, replacing Mulally, Bloomberg reports

April 21, 2014 20:10 CET
Ford plans to name Mark Fields its next CEO, Bloomberg reported, citing two people familiar with the pending announcement.

UAW withdraws objection to lost election at VW Chattanooga plant

8:29 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
The UAW said today it is withdrawing its objection claiming undue outside political interference in a February vote it lost among workers at the Volkswagen plant in Tennessee.

Plug Power, Hyundai steel supplier teaming up to make fuel cells

12:21 pm U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Fuel cell maker Plug Power said today it had agreed to form a joint venture with South Korea's Hyundai Hysco, a steel supplier to Hyundai Motor, to develop and sell hydrogen fuel cells in Asia.

Jackson: We'll get our own leads

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
CEO Mike Jackson put the big Internet shopping sites on notice last week: AutoNation is building Web products that will slash the number of leads the group's 229 stores get from AutoTrader, Cars.com, TrueCar and others.

NHTSA opens probe of Bosch EV chargers

11:43 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
U.S. safety regulators have opened an investigation of electric-vehicle chargers made by German supplier Robert Bosch LLC after a driver of a 2013 Nissan Leaf reported one emitted smoke while charging.

Blue sky high, acquisition action is, too

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Auto dealers are scrambling to buy new stores despite record high dealership values. They figure the earlier they can buy before the next downturn, the sooner they’ll earn profits and pay down acquisition costs.

Tesla will build cars in China within 4 years, says Musk

11:07 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who's preparing to begin deliveries of the Model S electric vehicle in China, said he expects to be making cars in the country in the next three to four years.

Plaintiffs call GM bid to freeze ignition suit a 'red herring'

10:49 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
GM's bid to freeze a lawsuit over faulty ignition switches may compromise public safety, plaintiffs told a judge in California, calling the automaker's claim that its 2009 bankruptcy shielded it from the old GM's liabilities “irrelevant” and a “red herring.”

Payout czar set to dive into GM legal mess

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Kenneth Feinberg soon may begin trying to put a dollar figure on the damage inflicted by the faulty ignition switches in General Motors cars.

HANS GREIMEL

Gridlock and chaos on the Beijing auto show floor

7:30 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
The Beijing auto show is renowned for being a full-contact sport of sorts. Walking the aisles, nay, even trying to enter the venue, can be a survival-of-the-fittest tussle.

BMW luxury concept gives a preview of 9-series sedan

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
BMW was set to preview a range-topping 9-series sedan at the Beijing auto show last weekend in the guise of its Vision Future Luxury concept car.

SEDAN SHOOTOUT

As Sonata turns cautious, Camry flees good-but-frumpy image

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Sales of mid-sized sedans may be off 8 percent so far this year, but redesigns from Toyota and Hyundai unveiled at the New York auto show indicate the segment has plenty of fight left in it.

NEW YORK AUTO SHOW

Land Rover Discovery Sport debuts line of 'versatile' SUVs

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Land Rover said the first vehicle in its new family of SUVs will be called the Discovery Sport.

Lincoln's China startup plans 20 stores by 2015

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
China is giving the 97-year-old Lincoln luxury brand a new lease on life. In a series of events last week, Lincoln launched a sleek new concept vehicle and a new retail vision.

Spring sales thaw spawns optimism for full year

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Sales thawed out in March and early April after the frigid winter, and auto executives at the auto show in New York City were optimistic about the rest of the year. They see growing consumer confidence and strong demand for pickups and crossovers.

2014 NEW YORK AUTO SHOW

Crossovers will be vital in Hyundai's 3-year product blitz

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Hyundai will soon return to the strategy that won it major sales and market share gains earlier this decade: a blitz of new products.

BIG SOFA, LITTLE CAR?

When Scion's too tiny, Toyota pilot program allows a larger loaner

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Scion is rolling out a pilot program that will allow vehicle owners to use other Toyota models as short-term loaners.

2014 NEW YORK AUTO SHOW

Subaru sees wider appeal for Outback

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
The redesigned Subaru Outback is more agile, has better driving dynamics, more contemporary styling and better fuel economy.

2014 NEW YORK AUTO SHOW

Voice of the fans brings back Audi A3 sportback

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
In its past life as a five-door, the Audi A3 never sold that well in the United States.

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Snow-covered sensors are no help

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
I was fascinated and dismayed to read "Camera Ready?" in the April 7 issue.

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

Kill the Mustang? We 'went ballistic'

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
I enjoyed the stories about the Ford Mustang in the April 14 issue.

Dealers

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Dealers featured this week include Mohinder Singh of Carlsbad Volvo in Carlsbad, Calif.; Bruce, Todd and Amie Bennett of Bruce Bennett Nissan in Wilton, Conn., Tommy Smith, left, and Dustin Tyson of Riverside Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge-Ram in New Bern, N.C.

EDITORIAL

Russian fallout

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Fallout from Russia's annexation of the Crimea region of Ukraine already is affecting the auto industry in Europe.

BEST PRACTICES

Warren Henry hires help to hire the help

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Warren Henry Auto Group hired an outside staffing agency to handle the 55 to 65 hourly employees who work in its detail shop and as porters.

EDITORIAL

Sounds like a plan: Nissan, dealers sidestep stair-steps

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Nissan has made a commendable effort to work with its dealers in setting up an enlightened alternative to stair-step factory incentives.

Take the time to teach

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Dealer Terry D'Arcy has created the unique position of delivery specialist at his three Illinois stores. The specialists teach customers how to sync their phones and use the navigation and infotainment systems. Eventually, the specialists are promoted to sales.

Nissan, burned on taxi deal, teases N.Y. with a prototype

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
First New York reneged on its contract to make the Nissan NV200 the city's official taxi last year. Now the cops want to write it a ticket.

New TLX is key to Acura's sedan revival

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Acura is counting on the 2015 TLX mid-sized sedan tol reverse a slide in the brand's sedan sales. Acura's U.S. sedan sales skidded 10 percent last year and have dropped 23 percent this year through March.

What can industry do to boost leases, residuals?

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Interest rates, gasoline prices, unemployment and natural disasters are among the unpredictable forces that have an impact on the economy. In turn, the economy has an impact on leasing.

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