Retail

California to phase out EV incentives for the wealthy

1:44 pm U.S. ET | Aug. 29, 2014
California, which offers rebates of up to $2,500 to electric vehicle buyers to help meet a goal of getting 1 1/2 million zero-emission vehicles onto its roads by 2025, is overhauling its incentive program in response to a common criticism: The state's rebates are sometimes just a windfall for the wealthy.... Read More »

 

Ford to halt B-Max production on slow sales, report says

Aug. 29, 2014 11:22 CET
Ford will halt production of the B-Max at its Romanian plant for nine days in September, a report said. The automaker has halted output in Romania several times since September 2013 on slow sales of the minivan.... Read More »

 

Lexus NX may challenge RX for brand sales leader outside U.S.

6:51 am U.S. ET | Aug. 29, 2014
The new Lexus NX compact crossover, already racking thousands of orders in Japan, may unseat big sibling RX as the luxury brand's top global nameplate. At least outside the United States.... Read More »

 

Ford launches '15 Mustang output in Michigan

12:01 am U.S. ET | Aug. 28, 2014
Ford officially launched production of the redesigned Mustang at its Flat Rock Assembly Plant in Flat Rock, Mich. With the 2015 model, Ford is making the Mustang to suit global tastes for the first time. That will include a first-ever right-hand-drive version.... Read More »

 

Toyota targets shoppers with location-based mobile ad tool

4:08 pm U.S. ET | Aug. 28, 2014
Toyota is using a location-based mobile ad tool to supercharge its annual clearance sale. The tool, Opera Mediaworks' Dynamic Sales Event platform, enables Toyota to target shoppers who are intent on making a purchase with banner ads on Web pages and apps that display the annual percentage rate for loans at dealerships in their regions.... Read More »

 

Russia pledges 207 million euros to resume car scrappage scheme

Aug. 28, 2014 12:19 CET
Russia will reintroduce a scrappage scheme to help stimulate car sales after deliveries in the market fell 23 percent in July as the crisis in Ukraine continues to hit consumer confidence.... Read More »

 

LARRY P. VELLEQUETTE

Fiat's cute cartoon characters suggest buying a 500 -- or else

3:38 pm U.S. ET | Aug. 27, 2014
Since Fiat was reintroduced to the United States in 2011, the Italian brand has stretched the advertising envelope. But a new animated spot set to debut on Gas Station TV touting the fuel and ecological advantages of a Fiat 500 minicar may be the brand's most wry offering yet.... Read More »

 

AUGUST U.S. AUTO SALES

Sales rate to top 16 million for 6th month in a row, analysts predict

12:46 pm U.S. ET | Aug. 27, 2014
Auto sales volume in the United States is expected to keep rolling along in August, with two independent forecasters predicting a sixth straight month of 16 million-plus selling rates. TrueCar predicts a seasonally adjusted annual selling rate of 16.6 million for August and LMC Automotive/J.D. Power is just behind at 16.5 million.... Read More »

 

JIM HENRY

Is CFPB guilty of spin?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Aug. 27, 2014
Remarks delivered by Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray and language used in a bureau statement last week were a lot harsher than the dry legalese of the consent order signed this month by the CFPB and First Investors Financial Services Group.... Read More »

 

Keith Crain will be honored at Boca Raton Concours d'Elegance

4:00 pm U.S. ET | Aug. 27, 2014
Keith Crain, editor in chief of Automotive News and chairman of Crain Communications, will be honored with a 2015 Automotive Lifetime Achievement award at the ninth annual Boca Raton Concours d'Elegance in February.... Read More »

 

Mercedes to ditch M-class in favor of GLE as part of renaming strategy

3:46 pm U.S. ET | Aug. 27, 2014
Mercedes-Benz is ditching the M-class nameplate as part of a comprehensive renaming strategy. When the vehicle receives a face-lift in early 2015 for the 2016 model year, it will be called the GLE class.... Read More »

 

BMW joins Cadillac wooing Silicon Valley to combat Tesla

2:24 pm U.S. ET | Aug. 27, 2014
BMW scored a coup this month when former Apple executive Tony Fadell became one of the first owners of the new $136,000 i8 plug-in sports car in the United States. Car companies covet Californians, who are seen as trendsetters for the rest of the country. All the better if they can win adherents among executives at companies striving to stay at the cutting edge of technology.... Read More »

 

Is rise in Q2 loan delinquencies a turning point?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Aug. 27, 2014
Industry-watchers insist that today's auto loan delinquency rates are low by historical standards. But a slight uptick in 30- and 60-day delinquencies in the second quarter could be a sign that the long decline in delinquencies could be reversing.... Read More »

 

F&I departments need a farm team

12:01 am U.S. ET | Aug. 27, 2014
The term “succession planning” is usually applied to dealer principals, but it can apply to F&I managers, too. Executives at two dealerships say store managers should nurture their own talent pool, so they have a ready replacement if a top F&I producer quits.... Read More »

 

'No evidence' of subprime auto loan bubble, Equifax economist says

12:01 am U.S. ET | Aug. 27, 2014
Equifax has joined other financial data crunching firms that dispute there's an alarming subprime auto loan bubble that's about to burst. Dennis Carlson, deputy chief economist for Equifax, said in an interview this week there's an easy tendency to decry subprime in general because of what happened in the past, and "it's not fair to do that.”... Read More »

 

HANS GREIMEL

See the wild Lexus NX spot too retro for outside Japan

10:35 am U.S. ET | Aug. 27, 2014
Drifting cars, techno music, string bikinis and foam parties. At first glance, Lexus' new “Shampoo” TV spot seems tailor-made for the trendy young crowd the luxury brand craves. But the brilliant, visually enticing commercial for the new NX compact crossover won't air stateside.... Read More »

 

AvtoVAZ aims to win back market share to return to profit, CEO Andersson says

Aug. 27, 2014 10:54 CET
AvtoVAZ plans to return to profit by cutting costs and rolling out new models to claw back market share that has been slipping away from the producer of Lada vehicles since the end of the Soviet Union.... Read More »

 

Ford's Quick Lane brand buys naming rights to Detroit bowl game

10:23 am U.S. ET | Aug. 26, 2014
Ford's Quick Lane brand of dealership auto service centers will be sponsoring Detroit's new college football bowl game in December at Ford Field. Members of the Ford family also own the NLF's Detroit Lions, organizers of the bowl. Financial terms of the multiyear title sponsorship were not disclosed.... Read More »

 

BRUCE GAIN

Hollywood glamour, Parisian chic and the Peugeot 308

12:01 am U.S. ET | Aug. 26, 2014
PSA is using the Hollywood film "Lucy" to give its Peugeot 308 a marketing boost in more than 50 markets around the world as the automaker strives to build sales outside Europe.... Read More »

 

JAMIE LaREAU

Dealers are missing an opportunity by not changing that tire

3:41 pm U.S. ET | Aug. 26, 2014
A recent survey reported that 52 percent of American teens ages 15 to 17 do not know how to change a tire. This is where savvy car dealers have an opportunity to do community outreach and get consumers in their doors for new or repeat business.... Read More »

 

Consumer Reports judges Ram 1500 EcoDiesel tops among half-ton pickups

11:44 am U.S. ET | Aug. 26, 2014
Consumer Reports says the hot-selling Ram 1500 EcoDiesel outscored competitors from Ford, General Motors, Toyota and Nissan to claim the magazine's top spot among full-size light-duty pickups.... Read More »

 

Asian, European brands dominate satisfaction survey, but U.S. brands close gap

12:01 am U.S. ET | Aug. 26, 2014
Asian and European brands dominate the top of an annual survey of customer satisfaction in the United States with auto brands, though overall satisfaction with the industry dropped for the second year in a row.... Read More »

 

VW Group sales rise 7% in July on Europe, China gains

Aug. 26, 2014 12:22 CET
VW Group sales increased 7 percent in July to 808,500 vehicles as gains in Europe and China outweighed declines in the Americas. Through seven months the automaker's volume is up 6 percent to 5.78 million.... Read More »

 

Subaru shows glitzy new global HQ befitting new stature

10:26 am U.S. ET | Aug. 25, 2014
Subaru today christened a glistening new global headquarters more befitting of the hot brand's bigger international profile. The glass-and-steel digs, in Tokyo's trendy Ebisu district, replaces a cramped, gloomy 48-year-old monolith it sold in 2010.... Read More »

 

Auto-shop class is a win-win for high school grads, dealerships that need mechanics

8:16 am U.S. ET | Aug. 25, 2014
Two years out of high school, Evan Fischbach is earning $40,000 a year. His secret: shop class. Fischbach, 19, has known he wanted to work on cars ever since he took an automotive class in his junior year of high school in Saline, Mich. His college-educated parents wondered if he was aiming too low.... Read More »

 

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