Dealers

Sonic Q1 profit falls 9% on weather, used-car start-up costs

11:30 am U.S. ET | April 22, 2014
Bad winter weather and costs associated with its standalone used-car store initiative contributed to a 9 percent drop in first-quarter profits for Sonic Automotive.... Read More »

 

NADA board member Don Chalmers dies

1:45 pm U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Don Chalmers, an auto dealer who represented New Mexico on the board of the National Automobile Dealers Association and was chairman of NADA's government relations committee, died Sunday.... Read More »

 

Hale works on makeover of Jag, Land Rover image

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Hundreds of employees at Jaguar Land Rover North America sport a green button saying “All In.” The button means they're committed to changing the British company's culture to focus on customer service and satisfaction, said Duke Hale, who was hired a year ago as vice president of customer service.... Read More »

 

New system, but no quick fix for GM

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
When General Motors last week unveiled a new way for dealers to order parts for the ignition-system recall, it reminded dealers of a hard truth: They'll be waiting for parts -- and placating impatient customers -- at least well into the autumn.... Read More »

 

Jackson: We'll get our own leads

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
CEO Mike Jackson put the big Internet shopping sites on notice last week: AutoNation is building Web products that will slash the number of leads the group's 229 stores get from AutoTrader, Cars.com, TrueCar and others.... Read More »

 

Blue sky high, acquisition action is, too

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Auto dealers are scrambling to buy new stores despite record high dealership values. They figure the earlier they can buy before the next downturn, the sooner they’ll earn profits and pay down acquisition costs.... Read More »

 

Lincoln's China startup plans 20 stores by 2015

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
China is giving the 97-year-old Lincoln luxury brand a new lease on life. In a series of events last week, Lincoln launched a sleek new concept vehicle and a new retail vision. Lincoln will begin selling vehicles in China this fall, starting with eight stores in seven cities and growing to 20 dealerships by the end of the year. By the end of 2016, Lincoln plans to have 60 stores in 50 cities.... Read More »

 

Dealers

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Dealers featured this week include Mohinder Singh of Carlsbad Volvo in Carlsbad, Calif.; Bruce, Todd and Amie Bennett of Bruce Bennett Nissan in Wilton, Conn., Tommy Smith, left, and Dustin Tyson of Riverside Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge-Ram in New Bern, N.C., and members of the Iowa Automobile Dealers Association.... Read More »

 

BEST PRACTICES

Warren Henry hires help to hire the help

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Warren Henry Auto Group hired an outside staffing agency to handle the 55 to 65 hourly employees who work in its detail shop and as porters.... Read More »

 

What can industry do to boost leases, residuals?

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 21, 2014
Interest rates, gasoline prices, unemployment and natural disasters are among the unpredictable forces that have an impact on the economy. In turn, the economy has an impact on leasing.... Read More »

 

AutoNation envisions quick, easy buying at digital store

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 19, 2014
When AutoNation fully rolls out its so-called digital storefront, the following scenario may not be all that far-fetched.... Read More »

 

U.S. dealers grapple with recall pain -- missing parts, overtime, lost sales

2:23 pm U.S. ET | April 18, 2014
With multimillion-unit recalls by GM and Toyota, and numerous smaller recalls by other automakers, dealerships in the United States are grappling with missing parts, rising overtime costs for technicians, frustrated customers, and lost sales.... Read More »

 

Lincoln maps out China strategy, sees learning lab for world

5:00 am U.S. ET | April 17, 2014
Lincoln set up a showcase called The Lincoln Space in a busy pedestrian area of central Beijing today to outline its strategy for entering the world's largest auto market. An initial presence of eight dealerships in seven cities this fall will grow to 20 stores by the end of the year.... Read More »

 

AutoNation says Q1 net income rose 15% to $95.1 million

7:11 am U.S. ET | April 17, 2014
Despite 10 weeks of problematic winter weather to start the year, a late March rebound in dealership traffic helped drive AutoNation's net income 15 percent higher in the first quarter of 2014 from the year-earlier period, the company said today.... Read More »

 

AutoNation stepping away from third-party leads

7:15 am U.S. ET | April 17, 2014
AutoNation, tired of paying high prices for online leads, plans to de-emphasize third-party lead providers such as TrueCar, AutoTrader.com and Cars.com, CEO Mike Jackson says. He says he will strengthen AutoNation's Web site and digital presence to build traffic and sales.... Read More »

 

GM sets up new parts-ordering system for recall repairs

4:10 pm U.S. ET | April 16, 2014
GM today gave its dealers a revised ordering process that the retailers said should speed the shipment of parts, ease repairs and ensure the job gets done right. But dealers said they aren't any closer to knowing when they will start getting parts for the millions of vehicles involved in an ignition-switch recall.... Read More »

 

JIM HENRY

Inquiry into alleged CFPB bias picks up steam

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 16, 2014
The issue of whether, ironically, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau allegedly discriminates against its own employees has got legs.... Read More »

 

LINDSAY CHAPPELL

Brace yourself for 'velocity'

1:06 pm U.S. ET | April 16, 2014
There’s a new buzzword trending through the car business right now: velocity. It has been popping up in conversations and presentations for a while, and is on the lips of visitors here at the New York auto show. And it might be a good thing.... Read More »

 

NADA's fixed-rate plan gets lawyers' backing

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 16, 2014
The National Automobile Dealers Association's program for dealerships to establish a fixed rate for dealer reserve was strongly endorsed by legal experts at the Automotive Resource Network conference in New York this week.... Read More »

 

Ally IPO opens new options for subprime car loans

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 16, 2014
Ally Financial's initial public offering last week benefits dealers because Ally expects to be able to compete more aggressively for subprime business after it sheds government ownership.... Read More »

 

Subprime lender adds markets, resists looser standards

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 16, 2014
Subprime auto lender Consumer Portfolio Services is resisting a trend among some of its rivals to push “too aggressively” to loosen credit standards, CEO Charles Bradley says.... Read More »

 

MyFord Touch bugs are getting squashed, Hinrichs says

3:10 pm U.S. ET | April 15, 2014
Ford has brought its problem-plagued MyFord Touch communications system up to exceed industry-average reliability -- and plans an upgrade to improve the system's capability, Ford executive Joe Hinrichs said today.... Read More »

 

THE GM RECALL

GM will update dealers Wednesday on recall parts status

4:10 pm U.S. ET | April 15, 2014
General Motors told dealers it will hold a Web conference on Wednesday to update them on the status of parts needed to repair millions of small cars recalled for faulty ignition switches, as well as the procedures to follow for the recall.... Read More »

 

Pro-Tesla bill appears dead in Arizona Senate

10:33 am U.S. ET | April 15, 2014
A bill that would have allowed electric-vehicle maker Tesla Motors to sell cars at its factory-owned showrooms in Arizona appears to be dead in the state's Senate. But Tesla vowed today to continue "re-engaging" the Legislature next year on the matter.... Read More »

 

How a Texas store fixed used-car-supply issue

12:01 am U.S. ET | April 14, 2014
Mike Shaw Toyota in Corpus Christi, Texas, struggled to find good used cars. So it started providing free appraisals to service customers and offered to buy their vehicles on the spot. The result: more used-car inventory, bigger profits and higher scores for service satisfaction.... Read More »

 

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