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Mercedes sales rise 19% in June on China, Europe demand

July 6, 2015 12:24 CET
Mercedes deliveries rose 19 percent in June as strong demand in China and Europe helped boost sales. Six-month deliveries rose a record 15 percent, the carmaker said.

Mercedes will pass VW in Japan this year on surging luxury car sales

July 6, 2015 11:30 CET
Mercedes will likely pass Volkswagen this year to become the top-selling import brand in Japan for the first time in 16 years, underscoring the nation's surprising boom in demand for luxury cars.

FTC remains vigilant on deceptive dealership ads

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
After two Las Vegas dealerships agreed last week to settle charges that they used deceptive advertising, the Federal Trade Commission said dealers can expect vigilant enforcement of dealers' practices to continue.

BEAR TRAP?

Chevy ad escalates pickup war, puts steel vs. aluminum issue on the table

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Chevrolet plans to escalate the pickup wars with a social media campaign that takes a swipe at Ford's aluminum-body F-150.

GM China growth outpaced by U.S. in first half

6:35 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
GM posted a slower pace of growth in China sales in the first half than in the U.S., as the economy slowed in its biggest market and local competitors flooded the market with cheaper SUV models.

Renault says Talisman midsize sedan has 'racy' design, innovative technologies

July 6, 2015 08:28 CET
Renault says its new Talisman midsize car has robust and racy lines and delivers "intense driving enjoyment." The Talisman, which replaces the Laguna and Latitude cars, will have a key role in taking the brand upmarket by offering near-premium features.

AUTOMOTIVE NEWS EUROPE E-MAGAZINE

Why Skoda's fast rise helps and hurts parent VW Group

July 6, 2015 06:15 CET
Skoda and VW brand are heading in opposite directions. Skoda's car sales rose to a record last year and its profit margin was 7 percent, far higher than VW's 2.5 percent. Now Skoda's success is attracting the wrong kind of attention at VW Group headquarters in Wolfsburg.

UK new-car sales rise 13% in June boosted by low finance deals

July 6, 2015 10:55 CET
UK new-car registrations in June increased 13 percent to 257,817. The increase meant that sales were up by 7 percent in the first six months to 1.37 million, which marked the best half-year performance on record.

New Honda CEO Hachigo wants exciting cars, maximum capacity use

July 6, 2015 08:39 CET
Honda's new CEO, Takahiro Hachigo, aims to reboot the automaker by developing more exciting cars, steering clear of numerical targets and maximizing use of the company's overseas production to soak up global overcapacity.

AUTOMOTIVE NEWS EUROPE E-MAGAZINE

Check out the ANE e-magazine for July

July 6, 2015 06:01 CET
The latest issue of the Automotive News Europe e-magazine is ready for you to view. This month's edition looks at why Skoda's rising sales and profits both help and hinder its parent, VW Group.

A new Suzuki leader for a new era

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Toshihiro Suzuki, tapped June 30 as president of Suzuki Motor Corp., is a different leader for a different era. A wallflower next to his father Osamu, Toshihiro says he has no intention of sitting as long at the helm as the chairman CEO.

Fleet stats cloud sales picture

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
June brought another surge in U.S. new-vehicle sales, with Ford showing modest growth while General Motors was alone among major manufacturers in recording a decline. But a closer look reveals a more nuanced picture: In retail sales -- those to individual customers -- GM was up 6.

BEST PRACTICES

Uber lifts Toyota dealership's marketing

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Toyota of Plano offers its best deals to Uber drivers, who make up about 6 percent of the store's new-car buyers and serve as evangelists for the Dallas-area dealership.

Automakers say they're open to outside dealership investors, despite scepticism

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Some automakers insist they are willing to take a chance on outside investors — provided they have a long-term focus and tap people with substantial dealership operation experience.

Rosekind expects NHTSA to act fast against FCA

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Despite overhauling its safety and recall operations since September, Fiat Chrysler is almost certain to face enforcement actions by federal regulators over alleged violations of auto safety laws.

PACE Awards website taking applications for '16

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
The Automotive News PACE Awards, jointly presented with EY and TRC Inc. and which honor game-changing, commercialized innovation by suppliers, has opened its website to accept applications for the 2016 competition.

Germany issues fines to 5 suppliers for price fixing

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
The Federal German Cartel Office has fined five automotive acoustic parts suppliers a total of 75 million euros ($83.1 million) for their roles in price fixing.

Nissan axes Pathfinder Hybrid

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Nissan Motor Co. has killed the hybrid version of its Pathfinder crossover as consumers look increasingly to traditional crossovers, SUVs and pickups.

Obituaries

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Former Ford Motor Co. President Philip Benton died June 14. He was 86.

FROM THE PUBLISHER

Did Piech's prodding revive Alfa?

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
So now that the Alfa Romeo plan is more fully hatched and the strategy is clear -- horsepower and hair-raising versions come first, and mainstream models follow -- here's a nagging question: Do we have Ferdinand Piech to thank for all of this?

HANS GREIMEL

Toyota must keep on pushing for diversity

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Toyota derives three-quarters of its sales from overseas. About 80 percent of its 338,875 employees are outside Japan. Yet only two non-Japanese are board members.

Giugiaro steps aside; Audi takes over

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Legendary car designer Giorgetto Giugiaro, whose work includes the original Volkswagen Golf and first Fiat Panda, last week resigned from Italdesign Giugiaro S.p.A., the styling and engineering company he founded in 1968.

Marketing test awaits Hyundai with NFL kickoff

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
A sponsorship of the NFL will give Hyundai a chance to elevate its stature in the U.S. market, but the company is still searching for its marketing quarterback.

Austria deal to ease JLR production

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Jaguar Land Rover has signed a contract to build vehicles at Magna Steyr's plant in Graz, Austria, to ease production constraints in the United Kingdom.

Financial aid for hydrogen infrastructure

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Japan's three biggest automakers plan to help cover the cost of operating hydrogen stations in the country to popularize cars powered by fuel cells.

Halftime score for U.S. sales

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
What was hot and not-so-hot in the U.S. light-vehicle market through June

Toyota Financial resists CFPB

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Toyota Financial Services said it has no plans to change its use of dealer reserve, despite scrutiny from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Chevy has a cool answer when phone gets too hot

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Chevrolet is beating the heat this summer by rolling out a phone-cooling system in select 2016 models.

NADA offers compliance help

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
The Federal Trade Commissions's aggressive policing of dealers' advertising practices has won the attention of the National Automobile Dealers Association. In January, NADA published HYPERLINK "https://www.nada.org/CustomTemplates/DetailPressRelease.

What other deals will Kanye foresee?

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
In his 2005 hit "Gold Digger," rapper Kanye West told a story of a football star whose onerous child-support payments force him to “win the Super Bowl and drive off in a Hyundai.

Google Maps will sound train whistle

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Google, responding to a call from the Federal Railroad Administration to help reduce the occurrence of train-vs.

By the numbers: $33,340

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
The estimated average transaction price for new light vehicles in June was $33,340, according to Kelley Blue Book. That's up $821, or 2.5 percent, from a year earlier. Ford Motor Co. led the industry, KBB said, with a 4.6 percent rise. Nissan was close behind with a 4.5 percent increase.

UAW wages may be flat, but workers' pay is up

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
In contract talks with the Detroit 3, the UAW will be looking to boost the pay of veteran Tier 1 workers, who haven't had a wage increase in a decade. But that doesn't mean their pay hasn't gone up.

NICK BUNKLEY

A sales record not worth breaking

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
By the numbers, the U.S. auto industry just had its best spring selling season in a decade. But that's not the whole story. rather misleading. June 2015 was actually far better than June 2005.

Volvo exec pledges to protect drivers from hackers

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Volvo's information-technology boss says the Swedish automaker's commitment to safety includes the promise to protect its customers from vehicle hackers.

Audi adds diesel to its best-selling A4

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Audi will offer a diesel engine in its best-selling sedan, the A4, for the first time when the redesigned car arrives in U.S. showrooms next year.

EDITORIAL

Chop chicken tax to lift competition and innovation

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
It's time to eliminate the so-called chicken tax. The onerous 25 percent U.S. tariff on imported pickups has stifled competition for a half century. Elimating the tariff would lead to greater competition among small pickups in the U.S. and spur innovation in a staid market segment.

XT5 flaunts side crease, wider grille

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Cadillac's new XT5, the replacement for the SRX midsize crossover, keeps the SRX shape but features a pronounced side crease that cuts above the door handles for a slightly higher beltline, show recent spy photographs.

Toyota claims top range for hydrogen-powered Mirai

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Toyota Motor Corp. said last week that its hydrogen-powered Mirai has a range of 312 miles between fueling stops, the most of any emissions-free car on the market, though finding a location for a fueling stop will be a challenge.

THE SUPPLIER SPEAKS: TADASHI ARASHIMA, PRESIDENT, TOYODA GOSEI CO.

Toyoda Gosei 'on track' to loosening Toyota ties

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Toyoda Gosei President Tadashi Arashima says his company is on track to reducing its dependence on Toyota Motor Corp., which accounts for nearly two-thirds of the Japanese supplier's annual sales.

THE SUPPLIER SPEAKS: GUILLAUME DEVAUCHELLE, HEAD OF INNOVATION, VALEO

'Everything will be different' with self-driving tech

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Autonomous driving will become Valeo's main growth driver by 2020, says Guillaume Devauchelle, who is head of innovation at the French supplier. Valeo expects to combine its expertise in sensors, radar and other technologies to play an integral role in automakers' development of autonomous vehicles.

Asbury takes tech shortage into own hands

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
Asbury Automotive wants 200 to 400 more technicians, so it is developing its own. Master technicians who otherwise would have retired are training new technicians at a vacated store in Atlanta.

Service growth comes down to the details

12:01 am U.S. ET | July 6, 2015
David Kelleher made a number of improvements at his David Dodge-Chrysler-Jeep-Ram store here as part of a $3 million expansion and renovation, but one often overlooked area drew particular attention: service.

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