Dealers

Mercedes introduces new names for its vehicles to avoid customer confusion

6:30 am U.S. ET | Nov. 11, 2014
Mercedes-Benz, hoping to overcome consumer confusion as its product lineup expands, is overhauling the nomenclature used to identify its cars and light trucks. The moves comes as it prepares for the launch of 30 models -- including 11 all-new vehicles -- by 2020....
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Cox Automotive to buy Xtime for $325M, enters service software business

3:30 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 11, 2014
Cox Automotive has agreed to pay $325 million in cash to buy Xtime, a leading provider of service scheduling and workflow software to dealerships, the companies announced today. The deal is expected to be completed in the next few days, said Keith Jezek, software division president at Cox Automotive....
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Ford dealership pays $128,780 in EEOC settlement after firing disabled manager

5:25 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
Randall Ford in Fort Smith, Ark., has been ordered to pay a former used-car manager $128,750 after failing to accommodate his post-spinal surgery disability and then firing him, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission said last week.
...
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BEST PRACTICES

Luxury retailer is in for long haul

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
Living a teenage boy's fantasy of driving exotic cars is part of Tom O'Keefe's job at Midwestern Auto Group, a 15-franchise group of mostly exotic and luxury dealerships in Dublin, Ohio, that offers valet service to its high-line customers....
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Chinese car import deal draws U.S. litigation

2:39 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
Julie Brown, the embattled former CEO of Plastech Engineered Products, is back in court six years after her company was liquidated under bankruptcy. Brown's new venture, Plastech Holding, is taking action against a company it says interfered with its relationship with a Chinese carmaker....
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GM touts 13,000 vehicles sold under Shop-Click-Drive

3:46 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
General Motors has sold more than 13,000 new vehicles via its online shopping tool Shop-Click-Drive since it debuted for use on dealership websites a year ago, the automaker said today....
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Benefits of Lithia-DCH deal go beyond numbers, CEO says

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
Before Warren Buffett bought Van Tuyl Group in October, the buy/sell sensation of the year was Lithia Motors' surprise acquisition of DCH in June. Lithia paid $340 million in cash and another $22.5 million in stock for the 27-store group. But did Lithia over- or underpay for DCH?...
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Lincoln opens its first 3 dealerships in China

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
After three years of studying China's consumers and luxury buyers, Lincoln last week opened its first three dealerships in the country and rolled out a new customer service initiative....
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Dealertrack is content in background

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
Sites such as TrueCar Inc., Edmunds.com, AutoTrader.com and Cars.com, provide millions of leads to dealers. Critics say they do so by building their own brands, too. Mark O'Neil, CEO of Dealertrack Technologies, is trying to provide dealerships an alternative....
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AutoNation's Jackson: Hot sales years ahead Jamie LaReau

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
U.S. light-vehicle sales will continue in the high 16 million to low 17 million range for the next "several years," AutoNation Inc. CEO Mike Jackson told the Detroit Economic Club....
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EDITORIAL

Dealers must tailor technology to their needs

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
Sonic Automotive's One Sonic-One Experience pilot in Charlotte, N.C., is the latest effort to make car buying easier....
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Auto vet Joe Herman dies at 72

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
Joe Herman had a knack for knowing people from all walks of the automotive industry, said Greg Goodwin, CEO of Kuni Automotive in Vancouver, Wash....
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Rising off-lease volume hits ADESA lanes

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
The number of vehicles sold at ADESA's physical auctions rose 4 percent in the third quarter as a much-anticipated rising volume of off-lease vehicles began to be felt in the remarketing world, said the CEO of the auction company's parent....
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Pull customers ahead to lift loyalty

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
A new study has found that reducing the customer's time in the vehicle can play a major role in building loyalty: The longer a customer owns a vehicle, the less likely the customer is to buy the same brand again....
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Dealers

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 10, 2014
Dealers featured this week include John Barile, dealer principal at Barile Ford in Valparaiso, Ind.; Doug Ikegami, owner of Doug's Lynnwood Mazda in Edmonds, Wash.; Dan Gorges, general manager, and Joe Isbell, assistant general manager; Jim Arrigo, president of Arrigo Dodge-Chrysler-Jeep-Ram in West Palm Beach, Fla.; and Michael and Bradley Schlossmann of Schlossmann's Honda City in Milwaukee....
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AMY WILSON

Joe Herman's lessons about the business will live on

9:46 am U.S. ET | Nov. 8, 2014
Joe Herman, even in the months before his death at age 72 in October, was focused on keeping his auto dealerships at the forefront of technology....
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M-B bolsters service with concierge program

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 8, 2014
Mercedes-Benz has launched a product specialist program for dealerships and aims to train 1,600 employees through the program by the end of next year....
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Mercedes gears up for its 3rd Super Bowl appearance

4:27 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 7, 2014
Automakers' plans for the Super Bowl in February are beginning to emerge. Mercedes-Benz has bought time in the big game, according to Donna Boland, a spokeswoman for the company. The news was reported earlier Friday by The New York Times....
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Poorly handled recalls are a 'black eye' for the industry, Jackson says

4:48 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 6, 2014
Mounting recalls this year are a “black eye” for the auto industry, AutoNation CEO Mike Jackson said today. The poorly handled recalls have resulted in an impression “seeping into the American consciousness that the industry does not have a coherent plan” to properly handle safety recalls, the head of the nation’s largest auto retailer told the Detroit Economic Club....
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Lincoln opens in China with 3 stores

4:03 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 6, 2014
Lincoln opened the doors to its first three stores in China today, launching what it is billing as a new customer service initiative -- “The Lincoln Way.”...
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Ford offers year-end incentives for dealers to meet sales targets

11:24 am U.S. ET | Nov. 6, 2014
Ford, seeking to hit year-end sales goals, rolled out a bonus program that offers dealers a cash bounty for meeting sales targets that some retailers criticize for cheapening the brand....
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Dealertrack raises financial targets after Q3 revenue surges

8:11 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 5, 2014
Dealertrack Technologies, which supplies a wide variety of auto dealership retail software and services, said its third-quarter business surged and it bumped up its revenue and profitability forecast for the year....
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Nissan babies the new Murano -- but will Americans share it?

6:35 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 5, 2014
Nissan gave the global launch of its redesigned Murano the white-glove treatment to make sure the crossover makes the brand shine around the world....
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TrueCar boosts outlook as Q3 revenue jumps 51%

6:48 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 5, 2014
TrueCar, the online car-shopping platform, raised its outlook for the fourth quarter and full year as it continues to add dealers and draw more customers to its network....
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LARRY P. VELLEQUETTE

Looking for a new F&I product? Mull this

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 5, 2014
Consider this a free idea -- the kind that hopefully somebody out there takes and develops and uses to make a lot of money....
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Honeymoons, hip hires, pro photos help stores

Honeymoons, hip hires, pro photos help stores

An Audi dealership has installed a spinning photo booth to deliver consistent vehicle images to online shoppers. A webpage is designed to build a harmonious relationship between a Mercedes and its new owner. Mon., November 17
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