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James B. Treece

News Editor
Address: 1155 Gratiot Ave.
48207 Detroit, Mich.
Follow: James B. Treece RSS feed
Phone: 313-446-1604
E-Mail: jtreece@crain.com
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Recent authored articles

Bad books, death threats and a bankruptcy: The stunning collapse of Reagor Dykes

The sudden bankruptcy filing by Texas dealership group Reagor Dykes marks a stunning fall for a former high flier, with more of the tale yet to come.

Time to look back on a career

As I retire, the U.S. is in a trade war. How fitting. Trade disputes dominated much of my 42-year journalism career, including 32 on the auto beat.

CPO sales back on the rise in first half of '18

Industry sales of certified pre-owned vehicles bounced back in the first half, rising 3.3 percent, after a flat performance in 2017.

Wave goodbye to walkarounds

Walkaround contests, where salespeople show off their deep knowledge of the vehicles on the showroom floor, are anachronisms and should go away.

Fixed ops need only a minor tuneup, survey says

Few consumers who visited a dealership service department think the process needs a major overhaul, a survey found.

Manheim auctions get high-tech makeover

Manheim has wrapped up a three-year, $100 million high-tech makeover of its physical auctions, re-engineering every process and replacing old technology.

What bugs consumers at dealerships?

A small percentage of car shoppers say negotiations over prices and terms could be handled better, and even fewer feel that way about the presentation of F&I products.

Auto auction app uses machine learning to aid inspections

TradeRev-H, an enhanced version of the Canada-based TradeRev app for one-hour online auctions, can change how vehicle inspections are done.

ADESA's bold bid to revamp auto auctions

ADESA is aggressively enhancing its online auctions -- through technology, analytics and machine learning -- in an effort to maintain its lead in private-label sales.

Auto auction app uses machine learning to aid inspections

TradeRev-H, an enhanced version of the TradeRev app for one-hour online auctions, can change how vehicle inspections are done.

For dealer loyalists, shop knowledge beats price

In a survey, 85 percent of respondents said they expect to go to the dealership for service after their warranty expires, mainly because “they know my vehicle.”

Market Scan powers fintech revolution

Market Scan's database powers many of the companies that are enabling online transactions, whether on dealership sites or independent apps.

Lenders can gauge how terms compare

Here is how Market Scan helps lenders know how best to structure their deals to win the business without overpaying.

Online quotes generally get payment right

When car shoppers are quoted a monthly payment online nowadays, most of the time, that is what they're actually going to pay, an online survey found.

Credit unions urged to begin leasing

If credit unions want to finance vehicles for ride-sharing or subscription services someday, they are being urged to start leasing now.

Consumers would welcome help in funding repairs

There may be an opportunity for dealerships to extend their vehicle-financing business into the financing of expensive repairs, an online survey found.

CarMax leads all publics in used sales, profits

CarMax, long the volume giant in the used-car market, also leads its rivals in profits and margins -- but challengers, however far behind, are on the rise.

Online auction ACV well past startup phase

The sale of a 2017 Mercedes-Benz G550 for $239,500 in late April shows how ACV Auctions, an app-enabled dealer-to-dealer auction platform, has matured.

Got any leads on that profit statement?

Providing sales leads to dealerships is hardly new. Third-party companies have done it for years, if not decades. But first-quarter earnings statements from four publicly traded lead providers — TrueCar, CarGurus, Cars.

ADESA's parent posts 30% Q1 profit gain

Net income at KAR Auction Services, parent of ADESA auctions, jumped 30 percent in the first quarter largely on a sharp drop in income taxes.

Volvo offers incentives to Costco members

Volvo Car USA has unveiled special incentives in partnership with the Costco Auto Program that mirror ones it offered last summer.

Fewer repair orders, better cost controls for car dealers in 2018

The average U.S. light-vehicle dealership did a good job managing its fixed operations department last year, figures from NADA Data 2018 indicate.

DMS vendors are entering a new era of competition

UPDATED: 4/30/18 11:22 am ET - corrected

As the dust settles from the 2018 NADA Show, it's increasingly clear we are entering a new era of competition among dealership management system vendors.

Online tools streamline trade-in appraisal process for dealerships, buyers

At the 2018 NADA Show, several vendors demonstrated appraisal tools that promise to take the guesswork out of how much a dealership should offer for a trade-in.

Losing money on used cars? Yes and no

NADA Data figures showing that the average franchised dealership lost money on used cars in 2017 may overstate the case, but the squeezing of margins is real.


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