Ford seen as ‘canary’ with record leases spurring used-car glut
A glut of used vehicles has started to depress prices. That trend will intensify as Americans will return 3.36 million leased cars and trucks this year, another jump after a 33 percent surge in 2016, according to J.D. Power. The fallout has already begun, with Ford shaving $300 million from its financial-services arm’s profit forecast for this year.
Wal-Mart, CarSaver will sell cars
UPDATED: 1/23/17 12:31 pm ET
Wal-Mart Stores, the nation's largest retailer, is jumping into car sales through partnerships with dealership groups, including AutoNation, the nation's largest new-vehicle retailer, and with CarSaver, an online auto retail platform.
JLR bringing virtual reality to showrooms
Jaguar Land Rover hopes to boost sales using virtual reality to preview upcoming vehicles. All of its global retailers, including U.S. dealers, are getting virtual-reality kits.
Calsonic Kansei takes top Shareholder Value Awards
Calsonic Kansei Corp., of Japan, grabbed both the one- and three-year crowns in the 2016 Global Automotive Shareholder Value Award from PwC and Automotive News, presented at the Automotive News World Congress Jan. 11.
Dealers watching inventory, adding staff
Dealers, slightly cautious about 2017, are holding the line on facilities expansions or renovations. More plan to trim new-vehicle inventory in anticipation of flat to lower U.S. sales. But overall, dealers are almost evenly split on their inventory plans.
Suburban stores at greatest risk of consolidation?
NADA consultant Glenn Mercer says suburban dealers are most likely to sell out in the next wave of store consolidation. Rural stores have lower volume, but also are less subject to price competition. And suburban real estate is worth more, so the suburban dealer has exit options.
2017 NADA convention events calendar
Here's a sample of the NADA convention social scene and affiliated events in New Orleans.
Exec: Alliance could benefit from Mitsubishi dealers
Mitsubishi Motors' alliance with Nissan Motor has sparked speculation about sharing parts, vehicles or production capacity. But Mitsubishi's No. 2 executive in North America says it also could benefit Mitsubishi dealers.
Dealertrack aims to introduce 'seamless, easy' F&I platform
Dealertrack's next-generation F&I system is a simpler, more deal-centric approach to working with Dealertrack's tools, such as credit applications, bureau reports, compliance tools, desking solutions and F&I product menus. That should allow dealerships to do everything in one place instead of opening multiple programs.
Autonomous cars could mean new role for dealers
The advent of autonomous cars and ride-sharing mobility services could mean massive changes for dealers. No one knows exactly what those changes will be, but industry officials are confident that the dealer body won't go extinct.
Employee turnover costs dealers billions
FIRST OF A FOUR-PART SERIES: When look-alike stores sell the same vehicles at roughly the same prices, only the people distinguish one dealership from another. Yet very few dealers are good at hiring and retaining employees. It's costing the industry billions of dollars a year.