AutoNation has 1-price tutor
Jerry Mullinax, son of Mullinax Ford legend Ed Mullinax, is spending some of his time at the AutoNation USA store in Coconut Creek, Fla. 'Jerry Mullinax is contributing his extensive experience in the automotive business to the mix,' said Jim Donahue, Republic Industries Inc. spokesman. 'And we would be crazy to walk away from the talent and experience he brings to the mix.' Mullinax, whose father is considered the pioneer of one-price selling, is helping the used-car megastore get the hang of the technique. Mullinax Ford was one of the first dealerships Republic bought. Donahue said leaders of other dealerships purchased by AutoNation USA parent company Republic will help AutoNation USA stores. That includes Lou Grubb in Phoenix, who is contributing suggestions to the AutoNation USA store there.
HIGH RPMs - After years of building world-class racing engines, Honda Motor Co. Ltd. is getting into powering airplanes. A pair of new turbofan engines developed by Honda R&D in Japan was unveiled recently to the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. The first experimental engine developed 1,800 pounds of thrust, and the second-generation prototype developed 2,200 pounds of thrust. In-flight testing has been performed over the Mojave Desert in California.
EV BUZZ - In a J.D. Power and Associates survey, 23 percent of the respondents said they would consider owning an electric vehicle. At the current market volume, that translates into 3.5 million potential EV sales annually. However, it is all uphill from there. Respondents said they would evaluate an EV like any other vehicle. So range, price and refueling remain big obstacles. Potential buyers also feared that an EV would strand them because they couldn't recharge it. Lincoln Merrihew of J.D. Power said,'Until enough of those concerns are addressed, it appears EVs won't meet that potential of 3.5 million sales.'
CARPOINT GOES TO WASHINGTON - Microsoft Corp.'s CarPoint was one of six Internet marketing services to make presentations to the Clinton administration at the White House July 1. The president wanted examples of how the Internet can benefit consumers and small businesses before he announces a policy on electronic commerce, said Alex Simons, product manager for CarPoint.
ASK ANYBODY IN TUSCALOOSA - Mercedes-Benz may build vehicles in America, but somebody needs to learn American football. In a publicity shot, some faux football players stow their gear in an M-class sport-utility. Coming off a natural-turf field, they're wearing clean shirts, mostly snowy white helmets, and shoes without cleats. Must have been Picture Day. But no, their pants are dirty. That must have hurt, since they're not wearing knee pads, thigh pads, or hip pads. Most of them are wearing anti-glare eye black, even though it's foggy. And nobody is six-seven, 325 pounds, including the guy wearing No. 73. Definitely not the Crimson Tide.