So that's what happened
Ads were only part of Cadillac DeVille Brand Manager Janet Eckhoff's presentation to the 1997 Marketing to Women Congress in New York last week, but they were an interesting part. The 1996 DeVille spot 'Passages' drew praise from the mostly female audience because it shows a mature couple enjoying each other's company. And Eckhoff adroitly headed off any criticism of the Catera spot that depicted Cindy Crawford as a princess and aired during the Super Bowl. After outlining the ad's purpose and intent, Eckhoff stunned the audience by pointing out Catera Assistant Brand Manager Karen Sehee-Licari, saying, 'It's her fault!' Eckhoff drew laughter and applause when she explained: 'Karen was on maternity leave; if she had been there, it never would have happened.'
DEALER WANTS TO ROLL THE DICE - Former Detroit Lions football player turned multibrand dealer Mel Farr hopes to add another title to his resume: casino owner. That's why he is teaming up with Donald Trump to seek one of three casino licenses up for grabs in the Motor City. Farr's Mel Farr Automotive Group is the 45th-largest dealer group in the United States according to the Automotive News top 100 dealer group listing, with 14 franchises in five states and 1996 sales of almost $500 million.
AIRING THEIR FEELINGS - The National Automobile Dealers Association is one of more than two dozen business groups making a last-ditch appeal to President Clinton to block proposed new air-quality standards. In a letter last week to Clinton, NADA and the others said they are unconvinced by recent EPA assurances that the burden of compliance would not fall on small businesses. 'The EPA's own analysis proves that many family-owned, family-run operations will be affected both directly through additional environmental controls and indirectly in the form of increased transportation and energy costs,' the letter said. EPA has said factory and utility emissions will likely be the main target of efforts to reduce ground-level ozone and small-particle pollution. A decision is expected within weeks.
SAAB LURES PALM - Mats Ola Palm, former president of Volvo Cars North America Inc., will serve as a board member for Saab Automobile AB in Sweden. Palm left Volvo in 1995 to join appliance maker Electrolux AB of Sweden. He is now executive vice president there. Palm generally was credited with rebuilding Volvo's U.S. sales arm in the early 1990s.
TIME FOR A CHARGE - Lee Iacocca is not back in the car business. But he is back in the transportation business. The former Chrysler Corp. chairman has founded EV Global Motors Co. in Los Angeles to develop and sell electric vehicles. Two-wheel and three-wheel vehicles - including bicycles and scooters - are planned. 'I spent 50 years in the automobile industry,' he said. 'During that time, I worked to put one, then two cars in every garage. I believe the time is right for electric transportation.' No production startup has been announced.