Retail

Tesla courts suppliers to stop bill banning direct sales in Michigan

6:22 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
With the fate of Tesla's sales in Michigan on the desk of Gov. Rick Snyder, the electric carmaker is looking for support from its supply base in the state. Tesla has reached out to its largest suppliers in Michigan to rally against House Bill 5606, which would bar the California automaker from direct sales in the state.... Read More »

 

WHO WANTS HYBRIDS?

Falling gasoline prices make alternative-fuel vehicles a tougher sell

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
For a sign of the challenges in selling fuel efficiency as a virtue, Tanner Hulette need only look at the signs near his dealership advertising gasoline for $2.70 a gallon. Hulette, general manager of Mechanicsville Toyota near Richmond, Va., said he's seeing higher demand for pickups and SUVs, and less interest in the Prius hybrid.... Read More »

 

Best Dealerships To Work For honored

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
A video montage of all 101 dealerships recognized on the 2014 list of the Best Dealerships To Work For.... Read More »

 

Tesla's sales limits in Michigan tightened by one word of law

8:32 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
By the removal of a personal pronoun from state law, a bill awaiting Governor Rick Snyder's signature would make it harder for Tesla Motors to sell its electric vehicles directly to customers in Michigan.... Read More »

 

918 Spyder nearly sold out, Porsche says

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Porsche's limited-run 918 Spyder is nearing sellout status. Production of the plug-in hybrid supercar's 918 promised units will end next July, and planned production is sold out through late March or early April, said Andre Oosthuizen, vice president of marketing for Porsche Cars North America Inc.... Read More »

 

CarMax's U-turn: A return to Web leads

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Used-car powerhouse CarMax has begun posting vehicle inventory again on AutoTrader.com and Cars.com after a 16-month hiatus. The shift underscores the challenge that new-car leader AutoNation faces in its effort to rely less on third-party lead sites.... Read More »

 

BEST PRACTICES

A terrible wreck, but not a total loss

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Most dealerships send totaled cars straight to the junkyard. White Bear Mitsubishi put one on display, and it has been reaping the rewards ever since.... Read More »

 

AutoNation won't up and quit 3rd parties

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Mike Maroone, COO of AutoNation Inc., said the dealership group intends to proceed cautiously in reducing its reliance on third-party online shopping sites.... Read More »

 

Are railroads snubbing autos?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Automakers frustrated by expensive delays in transporting vehicles to dealerships are about to learn whether railroads give preferential treatment to other shippers.... Read More »

 

Timeline: Regrowing pains

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
A look back at the events of August, September and October, 2009... Read More »

 

Bad feelings in Billings over deal veto

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
GM nixed the sale of a Chevrolet store in Montana to former NADA Chairman Bill Underriner. The tale behind that deal - what happened before and after -- shows how the right-of-first-refusal option can sour relations between dealers -- and between dealers and the factory.... Read More »

 

No. 1 store empowers, retains employees

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Texas dealer Greg May encourages his staffers to provide input and solve problems on their own. The empowered workforce at May’s Chevrolet store in the town of West quickly went into action last year, following a nearby fertilizer plant explosion. May’s team converted the service area into a donation and distribution center. And employees sold T-shirts to raise money for disaster victims. The blast strengthened the camaraderie within the store, which is ranked No.... Read More »

 

Cadillac dealers feel the heat

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Many Cadillac retailers say they've bought into the vision of Cadillac president Johan de Nysschen, who along with other top General Motors executives sold that vision during a dealer meeting last month in Las Vegas. The meeting left them inspired by promises of an abundance of product and a management philosophy that preaches product exclusivity. But others, especially lower-volume Cadillac dealers, are worried.... Read More »

 

FIVE YEARS LATER

Auto economists eye troubling signs on horizon

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Business is booming for auto dealers five years after the national economic crisis, so what could go wrong? Plenty, warns a number of auto industry economists.... Read More »

 

FIVE YEARS LATER

GM's loss, Hyundai's gain

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Stores targeted for closure by one troubled brand were snapped up by a rising brand.... Read More »

 

Impala the king of rental cars? No, not that Impala, GM says

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Since the stylish, redesigned Chevrolet Impala sedan rolled out in the spring of 2013, General Motors executives have been telling anyone who will listen that its days as a rental-lot staple are over. So this headline in The New York Times last week couldn't have gone over well at GM headquarters.... Read More »

 

China's policies are pushing out pickups

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
When Beijing implemented its Road Traffic Law in 2003, it granted city governments the liberty to decide whether to permit pickups to drive in their cities. A loophole in the law allowed traffic regulators in most Chinese cities to simply classify pickups as commercial vehicles and bar them from entering their cities. The practice has stifled pickup sales in China.... Read More »

 

Ford steers C-Max ads away from mpg

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Since Ford was forced to restate the estimated fuel economy of its C-Max Hybrid -- first in August 2013 and again in June -- the brand's marketers have rethought how to sell their hybrid-only nameplate.... Read More »

 

KEITH CRAIN

Something new at NADA

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
In January we're going to add a new wrinkle to the National Automobile Dealers Association convention in San Francisco. Automotive News is hosting its first annual Retail Forum -- a half-day conference focused exclusively on issues that matter to dealers.... Read More »

 

EDITORIAL

A long, painful trip

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
U.S. auto dealers have been on a difficult, painful journey for the past five years. But it has been a positive one -- at least in the aggregate. That qualifier is important.... Read More »

 

EDITORIAL

Factories should take long view using 1st refusal

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Automakers are replacing dealership buyers in active deals with preferred purchasers more than ever before, say dealers, buy-sell advisers and dealer lawyers.... Read More »

 

NAMAD's 2nd film chronicles history for next generation

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
The nation's largest minority dealership group has released the second in what it hopes will be a series of documentaries chronicling the history of minority dealers in the United States. The National Association of Minority Automobile Dealers released Making Tracks II in September, about nine years after the first installment in 2005.... Read More »

 

Pulling the plug: EV battery module exchange put to test

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
A team of engineers at the University of California, San Diego, plans to make a cross-country trip in an electric vehicle -- without plugging the car in once. Instead of going by the traditional plug-and-wait protocol for EVs, the engineers will swap out rechargeable, briefcase-size battery modules on the fly as they travel from San Diego to the coast of South Carolina in less than 60 hours.... Read More »

 

Startups see opportunities flowing from data port

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Some startups, impatient with automakers' progress and promising to bring older vehicles into the data-driven age, are racing to market with hardware and apps that tap into the OBD-II diagnostic port built into all new U.S. light vehicles' dashboards beginning in 1996.... Read More »

 

MIKE WOOD: How hard are you willing to work?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Long hours and hard work in the past few years turned Mike Wood from a dealership manager into a dealer with four stores. The market has been loaded with acquisition opportunities, he says, provided the buyer is willing to put in the sweat and hustle.... Read More »

 

Rocket Fuel