Automotive News Retail News Feed News, blogs and commentary from the leader in North American automotive news en-us Sun, 1 Mar 2015 06:00:00 EST Ultraluxury brands on course for near 40% rise by 2020 Sun, 1 Mar 2015 00:01:00 EST Strong demand for ultraluxury brands -- driven by new models, improved U.S. Ford Flex: High ratings but low sales Sun, 1 Mar 2015 00:01:00 EST The Ford Flex has a distinctive look, good reliability ratings and loyal owners. It's one of only two 2015 Ford nameplates recommended by Consumer Reports, and half of Flex buyers are new to Ford. But it was also the brand's slowest-selling U. In a frigid winter, a torrid start to 2015 Sat, 28 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST U.S. auto sales have started 2015 on a stronger note than expected, increasing the industry's chances of cracking 17 million vehicles this year for the first time since 2001. Dodge dealers called out for 'unscrupulous' Hellcat sales practices by FCA exec Fri, 27 Feb 2015 21:32:02 EST Fiat Chrysler has taken the unusual step of warning some of its most enthusiastic customers -- about some of its dealers. Snowbound New England dealers miss strong Feb. sales Fri, 27 Feb 2015 13:15:59 EST As Massachusetts recovers from 100 inches of snow in recent weeks, many dealers there are reporting weaker-than-expected February sales, operational losses and lack of space because of massive snow piles. Chevy Trax 'Hidden Gems' campaign leverages social media Fri, 27 Feb 2015 15:21:50 EST Chevrolet is getting creative with its social media approach, using it to introduce a new vehicle. The 2015 Chevrolet Trax will be introduced in a social media campaign dubbed 'Hidden Gems.' VW Group reports record profit on Audi, Porsche gains Fri, 27 Feb 2015 09:56:05 EST VW Group said its operating profit rose 8.8 percent to a record 12.7 billion euros ($14.25 billion) last year on double-digit gains in sales of luxury Audi and Porsche models. The company said its sales revenue rose 2.8 percent to a new high of 202. Toyota, Mazda bet against each other in quest for 94 mpg Thu, 26 Feb 2015 16:54:31 EST Japan's largest auto manufacturer and one of its smallest are betting against each other on divergent paths to the same goal -- an incredible fuel economy rate pushing 94 mpg. Mini designers dream up a racy Clubman for 'Gran Turismo 6' video game Thu, 26 Feb 2015 15:59:11 EST Mini has joined a growing list of automakers that have released high-performance concepts for 'Gran Turismo 6' on the PlayStation 3 game system. Fiat Chrysler to review its digital agency business, report says Thu, 26 Feb 2015 12:37:13 EST Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has begun a digital agency review, people familiar with the matter told Advertising Age, an affiliate of Automotive News. Lada proves popular in Crimea's vacated car market Thu, 26 Feb 2015 07:40:35 EST Lada, Russia's biggest car brand, has become a favorite in Crimea after its annexation by Vladimir Putin's government. GM cuts capacity, jobs in Indonesia, where Japanese dominate Thu, 26 Feb 2015 07:32:12 EST General Motors is to stop making cars in Indonesia, a battleground for global automakers in emerging Southeast Asia, closing an assembly plant, axing some 500 jobs and shifting its branding focus to SUVs. Daimler plans years of cost cuts to offset investments to reduce CO2 emissions Thu, 26 Feb 2015 04:26:09 EST Daimler plans to offset higher costs for technology to cut CO2 emissions with material cost savings for at least the next few years, Chief Financial Officer Bodo Uebber said. U.S. auto sales roar toward strongest February since 2002 Wed, 25 Feb 2015 14:00:30 EST U.S. auto sales are on pace for the best February since 2002, forecasters say, even as relentless snow slowed demand in the Northeast. February is expected to mark the 12th consecutive month of year-over-year gains for the industry. Lithia Q4 net income jumps 50% as it makes acquisitions top priority Wed, 25 Feb 2015 09:38:12 EST Strong sales across all divisions and the integration of its purchase last year of DCH Auto Group pushed Lithia Motors' net income up 50 percent during the fourth quarter. Valeo sees further profit gain after beating 2014 goal Wed, 25 Feb 2015 04:33:29 EST Valeo is targeting a further boost in profitability this year after exceeding its 2014 goals on strong demand for emissions-cutting technologies and intuitive driving systems. The company's operating profit margin rose to 7. Buick cracks top 10 on Consumer Reports report card; Acura, Mercedes, Infiniti drop Tue, 24 Feb 2015 12:45:00 EST Buick climbed into the Top 10 while Acura, Infiniti and Mercedes-Benz fell hard in the latest report card on reliability and performance from Consumer Reports. Lexus finished No. 1 for the third straight year, ahead of a rising Mazda. De Nysschen, 'Dare' I say, needs a better plan to rebuild Caddy's image Tue, 24 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST An open letter to Cadillac boss Johan de Nysschen: Fixing Cadillac will be the biggest challenge of your career, a far larger task, even, than breathing new life into Audi. My brother is a perfect example why. Tata plans image lift for ultracheap Nano Tue, 24 Feb 2015 18:43:17 EST Tata Motors, producer of the car conceived as the world's cheapest, is rethinking the 'cheap' part of it. Group 1 director resigns citing Buffett-Van Tuyl deal Tue, 24 Feb 2015 17:27:06 EST Group 1 Automotive board member Beryl Raff has resigned, citing a potential conflict of interest related to her employer, Berkshire Hathaway, and its pending purchase of the Van Tuyl dealership group. Raff gave up her seat on Feb. Sonic reports progress toward 45-minute transaction goal Tue, 24 Feb 2015 09:01:01 EST Sonic Automotive said today its new One Sonic-One Experience program to speed up transactions is making progress toward hitting its goal of cutting closing times to 45 minutes on average. Dealertrack reports revenue gains for Q4, all of 2014 Tue, 24 Feb 2015 12:02:39 EST Dealertrack Technologies, which supplies a wide variety of auto dealership retail software and services, said it posted revenue gains across the board during the fourth quarter of 2014 -- including organic growth of more than 20 percent. Upgrade envy has drivers trading in cars as often as iPhones Tue, 24 Feb 2015 07:26:15 EST Mike Fine was perfectly happy with his 2011 Nissan Xterra. Then he got a look at his son's ride. The 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee was packed with technology: a touchscreen loaded with apps, Bluetooth, all-wheel drive and push-button start. Toyota's most high-tech car gets ultra low-tech birth Tue, 24 Feb 2015 06:47:38 EST Toyota celebrated the launch of its high-tech Mirai fuel cell vehicle today from its noticeably low-tech production line. And President Akio Toyoda chose today as the celebration date for a reason. GKN sees more growth this year after 2014 profits rise 4% Tue, 24 Feb 2015 05:12:17 EST UK supplier GKN reported a 4 percent rise in annual profit last year and said it expected to grow again in 2015, helped by the continued strong demand for car parts. Ford plays matchmaker with Mustang Tue, 24 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST Ford invites guys to go on a blind date. EPA tweaks fuel economy test to improve accuracy of mpg labels Mon, 23 Feb 2015 15:37:30 EST The EPA today issued updated procedures for a critical part of fuel economy testing that some automakers have struggled with in the last two years. ADESA bows out of multiple platform auction sales Mon, 23 Feb 2015 19:52:11 EST After investing nearly two years and 'several million dollars' to help create online auction selling across multiple platforms, ADESA is bowing out, said Peter Kelly, president of ADESA's corporate sibling in charge of digital services. Dilawri Group expands rapidly in Canada Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST Privately held Dilawri Group of Cos., Canada's largest dealership group by store count, is in rapid expansion mode. Social-media 'influencers' create product buzz, change policies Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST An individual with social-media savvy can launch a discussion online that quickly influences industry actions. By knowing their audiences, influencers can quickly gain the same credibility with them as friends or neutral third parties. Daimler says it will sell more than 500,000 trucks this year, 700,000 by 2020 Mon, 23 Feb 2015 06:26:07 EST Daimler expects truck sales to rise at least 5 percent to more than 500,000 this year and to 700,000 by 2020 due to rising demand in the U.S., helping to offset a slump in markets such as Brazil, trucks chief Wolfgang Bernhard said today. TrueCar's new pitch: Factory coupons for shoppers Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST TrueCar Inc. spent the past two years rebuilding relations with dealers. Now the vehicle-shopping site is turning its attention to automakers to boost sales. Powerful? In this race, Ferrari trails Lego Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST Lego has toppled Ferrari from the top spot as the world's most powerful brand, says a new study. Tesla: The one company that can get Kochs, Sierra Club to see eye to eye Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST The Koch brothers' businesses market fossil fuels and turn forests into toilet paper. The Sierra Club, well, doesn't do those things. But on this much they agree: Tesla should be able to sell its electric cars directly to consumers. Did you hear the one about the GM phone? Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST News reports about Apple getting into the car business were the talk of Detroit and Silicon Valley last week. Many in Detroit think the maker of the iPhone is biting off more than it can chew. A sweet fleet deal Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST The victor of the next Postal Service fleet contract wins a ubiquitous showcase of its innovation, utility and durability for years to come. This is a deal that would be well worth the effort. CarMax beats Calif. suit over 'certified' documents Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST CarMax Auto Superstores California has beaten a fraud suit by the purchasers of a used 2008 Dodge Caravan who claimed the Riverside dealership where they bought the minivan failed to give them a state-mandated Certified Quality Inspection checklist. Porsche dealers eager to upgrade Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST About 150 of the 189 U.S. Porsche dealerships are renovating or expanding as the brand's sales have soared. Porsche may close a few U.S. dealerships Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST A handful of U.S. markets still have too many Porsche dealerships, Porsche Cars North America COO Joe Lawrence said, and the company may use its right of first refusal to close stores. Lithia launches pay plan to retain top store managers Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST Lithia Motors Inc. has started a new program that identifies top managers and gives them increased stock ownership in lieu of cash. The goal is to retain top talent and improve store performance, says Lithia CEO Bryan DeBoer. Road trip led to a new life on Instagram Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST A couple of years ago, Kevin Lu got bored with his career as a biomechanical engineer designing artificial knees and hips. Helping hand for minority dealer hopefuls Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST Bill Perkins knows how hard it is to get a dealership and to succeed. He lasted one year in his first store. But when he later acquired a dealership in suburban Detroit, other dealers helped him. That made the difference. Dealers Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST Dealers featured this week include Howard Braunstein, president of MandM Auto Group in Liberty, N.Y.; Peter Hoffman, dealer at Sierra Honda in Monrovia, Calif.; Jeff Crippen, dealer principal at Crippen Mazda in Lansing, Mich.; George Grubbs Jr. Salvage auction does a bang-up business Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST Salvage auto-auction company Insurance Auto Auctions Inc., sibling to auction giant ADESA, has been on a growth spurt since December 2013. In that time, it has opened, acquired, reopened, moved or expanded sites in 13 markets. VW sees 'banner year' for certified-used sales Mon, 23 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST Volkswagen division's certified used-vehicle sales rose 17 percent last month to 7,675. Cadillac's new branding effort debuts at the Oscars; CT6 gets sneak peek Sun, 22 Feb 2015 19:00:00 EST The commercials that Cadillac teed up for the Oscars broadcast Sunday night could be seen as simply the first step in what brand boss Johan de Nysschen has described as a "journey" to luxury prominence. Next-gen Chrysler minivan will be taller, wider with a rotary shifter Sun, 22 Feb 2015 00:01:00 EST The next-generation Chrysler Town and Country minivan will get a rotary shifter and other interior features common in Fiat Chrysler vehicles. The minivan also will be slightly taller and wider than the current version. Cadillac has a new brand strategy involving subtlety and fashion Fri, 20 Feb 2015 14:05:25 EST Bet you never thought you'd utter the words "Anna Wintour" and "Cadillac" in the same breath. Well, think again. Japan Toyota dealer hits 2 million milestone Fri, 20 Feb 2015 09:28:48 EST Nagoya Toyopet sold its 2 millionth new Toyota vehicle on Monday, making it the first independent retailer from Japan's top manufacturer to reach that rarified stratosphere. Tesla could open up to 12 Texas stores if legislation passes Fri, 20 Feb 2015 11:28:40 EST Tesla may be able to open up to 12 stores in Texas, if a group of state legislators gets its way. Under current state law, customers can purchase new vehicles only through a franchised dealership. %]