Retail

Dealers fume over new Edmunds videos that spoof price haggling

4:18 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 22, 2014
New YouTube ads from Edmunds.com have provoked a backlash. Some dealers say the four videos perpetuate stereotypes of dealers as unscrupulous bargainers; Edmunds says the ads are simply spoofs intended to show that customers dislike haggling....
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Has the Hyundai Sonata lost its mojo after redesign?

7:50 am U.S. ET | Oct. 22, 2014
The revamped Sonata sedan was supposed to help Hyundai Motor Co. reverse sluggish sales, but the car described by some critics as a bland substitute for its popular predecessor is off to a slow start in the key U.S. market....
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Valeo's third-quarter sales rise 10% on fuel-saving technologies

Oct. 22, 2014 15:00 CET
French supplier Valeo said third-quarter sales rose 10 percent to 3.06 billion euros ($3.9 billion), boosted by demand for its fuel-saving technologies....
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Asbury raises its acquisition target

7:27 am U.S. ET | Oct. 21, 2014
Asbury Automotive Group Inc.'s acquisition ambitions keep getting bigger. Asbury, the nation's seventh-largest dealership group, said today that it now aims to buy stores that will add $500 million in annual revenue during the next 18 months....
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JAMIE LaREAU

Gen Y guru entertains, informs

4:23 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 21, 2014
Who knew that demographics could be so funny?...
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Nissan's 2016 Maxima drives back to roots

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 21, 2014
Nissan's redesigned Maxima sedan may be getting back to its “4DSC” roots. Recent spy photos show an early prototype of the 2016 Maxima. The 2016 Maxima's fastback styling mimics the four-door coupe body styles found on several German cars....
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Sonic pushes back rollout of customer-experience program

3:40 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 21, 2014
Sonic Automotive will take at least six months longer than originally planned to roll its new customer experience program out to all of its dealerships....
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Ford cuts Focus Electric price by $6,000

3:23 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 21, 2014
Ford slashed the price of the Focus Electric by $6,000 to $29,995, including shipping. The price reduction will remain in effect for all 2014 models and will continue when 2015 models are introduced....
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Mich. blocks Tesla's sales model by plugging loophole

2:19 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 21, 2014
Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signed a bill today that effectively bars Tesla Motors' direct-sales model in the state. While Tesla's model was already prohibited in Michigan, the wording of its franchise law left an opening that the automaker could potentially exploit as it has in Massachusetts, where dealers unsuccessfully tried to stop it from operating a store there. That potential loophole is now closed....
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Citroen withholds new crossover from booming segment in Europe

Oct. 21, 2014 12:17 CET
Citroen's new C3-XR subcompact crossover will remain a China-only vehicle after the brand ruled out European sales of the model. Citroen says the C4 Cactus is a better fit in Europe for customers seeking a small SUV-styled vehicle....
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Chinese auto market growth will slow to 5% this year, group says

Oct. 21, 2014 11:34 CET
China's vehicle sales will likely rise just 5 percent in 2014 to 23 million, according to the country's main auto association, which revised its growth forecast downward for the second time this year....
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'Aggressive' EV ambitions will boost aluminum demand in China

Oct. 21, 2014 12:02 CET
China's drive to build electric cars as a way to combat pollution and reduce energy dependence is likely to set up a greater-than-forecast surge in demand for aluminum, according to Novelis, the world's biggest supplier of the material to automakers....
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Tesla courted suppliers in bid to stop bill banning direct sales in Mich.

6:22 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Tesla Motors looked for support from its suppliers in Michigan in the company's unsuccessful bid to get Governor Rick Snyder to veto a bill that bans Tesla from selling its EVs directly to customers in the state....
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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....
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BILL LIA: Keep stores modern

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
"People keep asking us for our store designs," says Bill Lia, the 78-year-old CEO of Lia Auto Group in Albany, N.Y., which just finished building its 19th dealership. "We want to keep everything modern and up to date."...
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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....
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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....
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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....
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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....
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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....
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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....
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Timeline: Regrowing pains

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