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BLOG: Jamie LaReau
Posted 3:37 pm U.S. ET, Sept. 17
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Posted 8:50 am U.S. ET, Sept. 27
Given the choice to sell cars or scoop dog poop to pay the bills, my friend armed herself with a roll of plastic bags and a leash.
That’s despite my encouragement that she could earn a lucrative living, enjoy generous benefits, build a career and scarf down some awesome free doughnuts in the service lane daily by working at a car dealership.
No thanks. She will wal ... Continue reading "Why hiring car salespeople is going to the dogs " » Oct 23, 2015 12:21 pm U.S. ET Permalink
Some Volkswagen dealers are banking on the public’s short attention span.
They figure that an inattentive and apathetic public will be the German automaker’s key to recovery following the company’s diesel emissions-test cheating scandal.
These dealers believe if VW’s damage control is swift and aggressive, the public will quickly forget VW’s ... Continue reading "VW dealers have a damage control plan for the average Joe" » Sep 27, 2015 8:50 am U.S. ET Permalink
In light of the Frankfurt auto show this week, let’s give German professor Wilhelm Schickard his due.
Schickard invented what’s considered the first calculator -- clearly a much-needed technology.
In contrast, some of today’s technology is unneeded and, in some cases, more hindrance than helpful.
Case in point: Honda’s LaneWatch technology.
Lane ... Continue reading "Honda's LaneWatch is distracting, unnecessary -- and an opportunity for dealers" » Sep 17, 2015 3:37 pm U.S. ET Permalink
It was just another day here in the newsroom when my phone rang. Caller ID said it was J. Girard.
Mr. Girard was a reader calling for clarity about a story I’d written. I answered him and was about to sign off, when he asked me if I knew the name Joe Girard.
I vaguely recalled his name from past Automotive News stories. He proceeded to refresh my memory. From 1966- ... Continue reading "Sales legend rings up with advice on cars, marriage, cars" » Aug 13, 2015 10:03 am U.S. ET Permalink
Most F&I folks subscribe to the “300 percent rule”: Offer 100 percent of the products to 100 percent of the dealership’s customers 100 percent of the time.
But a recent conversation with a friend makes me think the rule doesn’t apply to 100 percent of cases.
My friend just bought a new sedan. He shopped a few dealerships and was well-researche ... Continue reading "A case for breaking the 300% rule" » Jun 17, 2015 11:45 am U.S. ET Permalink
I never met Kirk Kerkorian, who died Monday at age 98. But I feel as if I knew him.
I covered General Motors for Automotive News from 2005 to 2009.
In 2006, Kerkorian’s Tracinda Corp. had such a large stake in GM that his lieutenant Jerry York was named his representative on the GM board of directors.
Jerry and I started regularly lunching together. Sadly, he died ... Continue reading "A fantastic and revealing story of Kirk Kerkorian" » Jun 16, 2015 1:36 pm U.S. ET Permalink
Do women pay more for the same cars than men do?
That’s the question that NBC’s “Today” show will try to answer tomorrow.
It is part of a secret-shopper series on female consumers. The segment today said studies show women pay an average of $1,400 a year more than men for similar products and services. It’s dubbed the “pink tax” ... Continue reading "Why dealers must pay attention to the 'pink tax'" » Jun 2, 2015 3:07 pm U.S. ET Permalink
Attention F&I product providers and lenders: Dealers want your help.
As the gross profit margins on new-vehicle sales continually narrow, dealers are worried about the future and where the profits on the sales side will come.
The F&I office is an obvious place. But to keep it that way, dealers have a wish list that only F&I product providers and lenders can f ... Continue reading "F&I providers and lenders, here's your chance to fulfill dealers' dreams" » May 27, 2015 11:30 am U.S. ET Permalink
How hot is the competition getting in the F&I product space?
So hot that “the future of finance is in consulting,” said Damien Bullard, co-founder of IDDS Group.
That’s a bold statement given that part of IDDS’ business comes from selling finance and insurance products from other providers. The New York company also consults and trains in deal ... Continue reading "Is the F&I product space overcrowded? Views differ" » May 13, 2015 11:45 am U.S. ET Permalink
Lithia Motors Inc. has taken a step in the right direction.
On May 11-14, the dealership group hosts its first Lithia Women’s Leadership Week. The company has invited 70 of its female managers to the conference at its Medford, Ore., headquarters.
“The primary motivation is to offer an enrichment opportunity to the women we already have,” said Tom Dobry, ... Continue reading "Lithia reaches out to women in step toward industry evolution" » May 6, 2015 12:13 pm U.S. ET Permalink
Most dealers probably don’t lose sleep with worry that Uber, the popular app-based service that pairs private drivers with riders, will usurp car ownership anytime soon despite Uber’s ambitions to make it so.
In most cases, when a person drives more than 13,500 miles a year, car ownership is still ideal and ultimately cheaper than using ride-sharing, according ... Continue reading "Uber might trump the cost of car ownership, but not leasing…yet" » Apr 25, 2015 12:01 am U.S. ET Permalink
When a fictional Russian president says, “I want the Lexus” while reminiscing about copulating with his ex-wife in one, it is either genius product placement or incredibly fortuitous for Toyota’s luxury arm that the writers of Netflix’s hit House of Cards like the brand.
Turns out it was great luck.
“This is totally organic, nothing we place ...