Headlines for Wednesday, June 4, 2014

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2014 AUTOMOTIVE NEWS EUROPE CONGRESS:

Toyota Europe's profit rebound built on hybrid sales, cost-cutting

Toyota is now solidly profitable in Europe on the back of rising hybrid sales and aggressive cost-cutting across its operations, head of Toyota Europe Didier Leroy told the Automotive News Europe Congress in Brussels. Read More »

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Hail ravages thousands of vehicles at Nebraska, Iowa dealerships

Woodhouse Auto Family, the owner of Woodhouse Ford in Nebraska, known for its Truck Mountain, said it sustained damage to nearly 4,400 of its vehicles Tuesday night as storms pelted the Midwest with baseball-sized hail. Read More »

Dana to expand Ohio HQ, new UAW contract approved

Dana plans to expand its headquarters in suburban Toledo, Ohio, and consolidate workers from other offices in the new space. Read More »

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M-B breaks ground on new West Coast sales, training center

Mercedes-Benz USA began construction today on a new home for its West Coast operations that will consolidate a vehicle preparation center, a learning and performance center and a regional sales office. Read More »

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European car sales lackluster in May

New-car registrations across Europe were generally lackluster in May after a rebound in the first few months of the year, although sales in Germany and Spain rose due to incentives and subsidies. Read More »

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AutoNews Now: Dealership's night of hail

Storm damages thousands of cars; Honda, Benz tops in perceived quality; Ford shows lighter side; Ghosn on self-driving cars. Read More »

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Canada's auto suppliers showcase connected crossover

Canada's Automotive Parts Manufacturers Association, aiming to spotlight the country's supplier community and technology capabilities, unveiled an advanced connected vehicle Wednesday at its annual conference in Windsor, Ontario. Read More »

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Dennis Williams elected UAW president as King retires

Dennis Williams was elected president of the UAW today at its 36th Constitutional Convention. Williams, 61, takes the helm of the United States auto workers union for four years, replacing Bob King, 67, who officially retired at the convention. Read More »

Toyota's ad agency hires new creative chief

Saatchi & Saatchi LA, the longtime advertising agency of record for Toyota Motor Sales USA, has hired Jason Schragger, a former creative executive with Nissan's global marketing team, as its new chief creative officer to oversee work for the Toyota brand. Read More »

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First Shift: May winners, losers

Seven biggest automakers post higher sales; UAW dues hike; GM apology; Musk talks tenure; boosting Hyundai buyers. Read More »

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Schaeffler names Rosenfeld to top job as CEO designate is dropped

German supplier Schaeffler has decided not to give the top job to CEO designate Klaus Deller, and has instead given the role to interim CEO Klaus Rosenfeld. Read More »

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2014 AUTOMOTIVE NEWS EUROPE CONGRESS:

Renault committed to expanding upscale offerings with Initiale Paris, CFO says

Renault is committed to expanding its upscale offerings with its Initiale Paris badge, Dominique Thormann, the carmaker's Chief Financial Officer, said at the Automotive News Europe Congress. Read More »

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THE GM RECALL:

GM to release results of internal probe on Thursday

General Motors plans to release on Thursday morning results from its internal investigation into why it did not recall 2.6 million vehicles with faulty ignition switches for about a decade after problems surfaced. Read More »

Follow GM's recall report Thursday on autonews.com

General Motors CEO Mary Barra will hold a town hall-type meeting with employees on Thursday to share the findings of an internal investigation into why the automaker took so long to recall vehicles with flawed ignition switches. Read More »

FTC crackdown on Consumer Portfolio Services start of 'regulatory onslaught'

Last week's consent order with subprime lender Consumer Portfolio Services won't be the last time the FTC targets an auto lender for fairness in collections and loan servicing rather than discrimination in loan originations, lawyers say. Read More »

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Canadian union may strike supplier to GM plant in Oshawa, Ontario

Unifor, which represents Canadian auto workers, will strike at Johnson Controls' Whitby, Ontario, plant if the parts maker doesn't reverse its plan to close the facility in a couple of years. Read More »

Credit union pilot aims at subprime business

Many credit unions still shy away from subprime auto loans. But a national trade group is trying to remedy that with a pilot program involving 14 credit unions interested in starting up or increasing subprime auto loan penetration. Read More »

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JIM HENRY:

Lender consent order grants insight into FTC

Dealers and their legal counsels should check out last week's consent order between subprime auto lender Consumer Portfolio Services and the Federal Trade Commission, even though the case isn't about dealerships. Read More »

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More growth in auto loans, report shows

Outstanding auto loans and leases combined hit $884 billion as of April 30, a record high and a 10.8 percent increase from the same date a year ago, credit bureau Equifax reported this week. Read More »

Cadillac store loses bid to appeal award in spot delivery case

A Louisiana dealership that brought the police into a spot delivery dispute with a customer has lost its bid to appeal her $15,600 award for false imprisonment. Read More »

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AutoNation retail sales rise 15% for best-selling May since 2006

AutoNation said its new-vehicle retail sales jumped 15 percent in May from the year-earlier month to 30,275 units, the company’s best-selling May since 2006. Read More »

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BMW leads Mercedes in U.S. luxury sales race in May

BMW topped Mercedes in May U.S. sales as smaller, cheaper models and fashionable SUVs helped luxury brands increase deliveries. Read More »

F&I TIP:

Why atypical pricing on F&I products works best

F&I managers should choose atypical prices for service contracts and other F&I products, then stick to them, advises F&I trainer Ron Reahard. “Charge $1,822, not $1,795. A number like $1,795 conveys two messages: one, the price is negotiable, and two, you're trying to make it sound cheaper. Read More »

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JESSE SNYDER:

Playing ‘Pros & Cons’

I have mixed feelings about April’s sales results. Yes, volume rose 8 percent and put us on pace to reach 16 million units this year. But no, it didn’t blow the doors off. Read More »

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Opel plans return to profit through closer ties with parent GM

Opel aims to return to profit and increase its market share in Europe by focusing on smaller cars using more components from parent company General Motors, CEO Karl-Thomas Neumann says. Read More »

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GM officials expect internal probe to exonerate Barra, report says

General Motors officials increasingly believe CEO Mary Barra will be cleared of wrongdoing in the recall crisis after a three-month internal investigation, the New York Times reported. Read More »

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2014 AUTOMOTIVE NEWS EUROPE CONGRESS:

EU aims to have 20 percent of GDP come from manufacturing, official says

The European Union wants to boost the bloc's share of economic output coming from manufacturing by a quarter by 2020, its official in charge of automotive regulation told the Automotive News Europe Congress. Read More »

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DOUGLAS A. BOLDUC:

Toyota Europe boss shares secrets to his success

Toyota Europe CEO Didier Leroy says that to become a true leader you should not worry about making your boss happy. Read More »

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Ghosn predicts self-driving cars could hit roads in 2018

Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn predicts that self-driving cars could be on the roads four years from now, provided red tape does not get in the way. Read More »

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Automotive News Europe honors the 2014 Rising Stars

Fourteen young and talented automotive executives have been honored as Rising Stars within the automotive industry by Automotive News Europe. Read More »

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