Retail

LINDSAY CHAPPELL

Bad weather will shape future retailing

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 27, 2014
Bad weather has the power to overturn auto industry forecasts and plans and outlooks. And the long-range expectations for worse weather to come could have the power to mess up the industry's neat longstanding practices and traditions....
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Discounts, falling gas prices driving Nov. sales higher

3:30 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 25, 2014
The U.S. auto industry may post its highest November sales volume since 2001, and one forecaster says light-vehicle transaction prices are on pace to reach the highest level ever for a second consecutive month. Year-end clearance sales and the lowest gasoline prices since 2010 are two big factors behind the forecasts....
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Lexus' Bracken says 300,000 U.S. sales 'is within our grasp' this year

1:35 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
Lexus is raising its U.S. sales target to 300,000 vehicles this year, General Manager Jeff Bracken said. “We started the year with a sales goal of 290,000 units,” Bracken told Automotive News. “Now 300,000 is within our grasp.”...
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Buffalo dealers dig out while Ford restarts stamping plant

2:44 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
Auto dealers in the Buffalo region are reopening this week after digging out from the massive snowstorm that dumped up to 7 feet of snow in some areas. Meanwhile, Ford's Buffalo Stamping Plant resumed operations over the weekend after suspending operations because of impassable roads....
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Ford to keep base price stable on Explorer, but raises top trim level

3:58 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
Ford has held the line on prices for the refreshed 2016 Explorer crossover, but a new top-of-the-line Platinum trim raises the ceiling on what a customer can spend for the hot-selling full-size crossover to well above $50,000....
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Fiat takes on 'Fix It Again, Tony' in spot for the 500X

11:30 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
Fiat global brand head Olivier Francois calls Tony “the elephant in the room.” And for more than five years, Fiat has tried to run away from him, even though Tony does not exist, but no more. A new spot for the Fiat 500X finally takes on Tony -- the nom de guerre for the brand's decades-old quality woes in its “Fix It Again, Tony” English-language acronym....
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Fuel cell cars steal spotlight

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
Automakers are beginning to nudge the hydrogen fuel cell vehicle out of the illusion factory that is Southern California and into the broader conversation about the future of clean transportation....
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Toyota's fuel cell goal: Big cost cutting

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
Toyota Motor Corp.'s top fuel cell engineer predicts the automaker will slash the cost of the next hydrogen-fueled powertrain to between one-third and one-fourth the cost of the current system....
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Hyundai-Kia says it will sell record 8 million vehicles globally in 2014

6:22 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
Hyundai and Kia said better-than-expected sales in Brazil, China and India will help them sell a record 8 million vehicles this year, even as a stronger won erodes profitability....
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FROM HANDICAP TO HANDY SOLUTION

Ghosn: Nissan will fill gaps with Japanese imports

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
As Nissan Motor Corp. pushes to boost U.S. market share and cut reliance on Japanese imports, it's clear which goal takes priority: selling more vehicles. Even if it takes more imports to do it. Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn says the devalued yen has made his Japanese plants an acceptable solution to augment North American production as the company stretches for a 10 percent U.S. market share....
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Chevy will sit out Super Bowl

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
After two big plays in the last Super Bowl, Chevrolet may watch from the couch....
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Chevy Trax marketing will be heavy on digital

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
Chevrolet will use a heavy dose of digital ads for the Trax when the subcompact crossover's marketing begins early next year....
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Dealer's vintage car auction packs 'em in

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
We reported last month on Dallas-area Ford dealer Sam Pack's plans to auction off 131of his 473 vintage automobiles in Dallas on Nov. 15. So how did things turn out? The event certainly attracted a crowd....
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Now that's what I call a comeback

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
It's official. The comeback that has followed the bottoming out of auto sales in 2009 has some serious legs. In fact, it's the longest-lasting post-recession sales rebound in modern history....
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South Korea embraces European imports. Yes, South Korea

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
Here is a fairly stunning statistic: South Koreans, long viewed as among the most nationalistic of car buyers, are on track to spend more on vehicle imports from Europe this year than their country takes in from its own vehicle exports....
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Toyota: Fuel cell water safe to drink ... but don't try it

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
Toyota pitches its new Mirai hydrogen fuel cell car as a godsend for the planet. Heat and water are its only byproducts, not climate-altering carbon dioxide. But just how clean is that exhaust water vapor? Turns out, the Mirai's exhaust water is safer than milk, Toyota says. Still, no one at Toyota has tried it....
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BEST PRACTICES

Cardinale group makeover flexes digital muscle

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
In 2008, the recession was raging, and dealer Joe Cardinale decided to make some changes. He committed heavily to online sales and marketing, and parted ways with third-party lead providers, developed his own systems and software to manage his online presence. And he set stringent goals for his staff and held them accountable for results. It has worked wonders....
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Structural damage or fender bender?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
TrueFrame will inspect any vehicle, at a dealership's request, that has an accident on its history report. TrueFrame issues its own report if the vehicle passes its cosmetic and structural standards. The TrueFrame report is sent to the dealership that requested it and to vehicle history reporting companies such as Carfax Inc., which has agreed to link TrueFrame reports to its vehicle history reports....
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Next phase of multiplatform sales? Hold your horses

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 24, 2014
Remarketers, auto dealers and others had hoped to hear at a remarketing conference this month about when the next stage in online multiplatform auction selling would arrive. But when Jay Cadigan, who represents Manheim in conversations with other key players hammering out details of the initiative, was asked about its timeline, he demurred....
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BMW, Mercedes gain in once-impregnable Korea

Nov. 23, 2014 06:01 CET
South Korea's car imports have leapt from 3 percent of sales a decade ago to 14 percent today as foreign brands led by Germany's BMW and Mercedes take advantage of a free trade deal to grow sales in a once-impregnable market....
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Chrysler blitzes American Music Awards

11:00 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 23, 2014
Chrysler on Sunday night launched an ad blitz during the American Music Awards that linked five of its brands to A-list recording artists in spots that co-promoted both the vehicles and Interscope singles....
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How the stars aligned with Chrysler brands

11:00 pm U.S. ET | Nov. 23, 2014
How did Chrysler decide which star fit best with which auto brand? Marissa Hunter, director of global brand advertising and head of Ram Truck brand advertising, laid it out like this....
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Study slams CFPB's proxy methodology

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 23, 2014
The statistical method the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau uses to identify which consumers belong to minority groups correctly identified African-American borrowers only 24 percent of the time. That was one of the findings of a nearly yearlong study commissioned by the American Financial Services Association, a lender group with offices in Washington....
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Two-car households will decline, KPMG report predicts

12:01 am U.S. ET | Nov. 22, 2014
Two-car households may be on the decline as urbanization increases, but they are far from disappearing, a KPMG report said this week....
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CHRISTIAAN HETZNER

Volkswagen raises the stakes in China

9:22 am U.S. ET | Nov. 21, 2014
Volkswagen's investment plans for the next five years tell one story very clearly – the company is becoming ever more dependent on growth in China in its bid to overtake Toyota as the world's No. 1 carmaker....
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Special Report
How 3 dealerships are connecting with tech-savvy shoppers

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Three dealers have found ways to forge bonds with car shoppers who are short on time and long on Web smarts. A Honda store has mobilized a young sales team hired from Starbucks and Best Buy. Mon., November 17
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