Automotive News Table of Contents

June 26, 2017

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Can Kuhnt get BMW back on track?
Author: Amy Wilson

BMW dealers say they need fresh product, more trucks, competitive lease rates and a return to the "Ultimate Driving Machine" days. They're looking at Bernhard Kuhnt for help.

How Ford pulled up its quality score
Author: Michael Martinez

The Ford brand achieved its highest initial-quality mark since the J.D. Power study started 30 years ago. Joe Hinrichs credits the turnaround to a series of moves begun in early 2013.

Suppliers prepare for self-driving bonanza
Author: David Sedgwick

In 2020, automakers are expected to produce nearly 86 million vehicles equipped with collision-avoidance systems. It's a potential bonanza for big parts makers, including those that dominate the annual Automotive News list of the top 100 global suppliers.

Body-on-frame trucks refuse to die
Author: David Undercoffler

Think body-on-frame trucks are relics of the past? Nope. They're wildly popular, and profitable.

Mexican auto suppliers strategize for NAFTA talks
Author: Laurence Iliff

While President Donald Trump points the finger at automakers making cars south of the border, the Mexican auto parts sector has even more at stake.

Plenty to watch in last half of '17
Author: Jesse Snyder

Several old-fashioned U.S. sales races are shaping up to keep the second half of 2017 lively.

Cybersecurity push may tie up autonomous-car legislation
Author: Eric Kulisch

Two senators are pushing for mandatory federal standards to defend vehicles against hackers. Automakers want a more flexible approach.

Fire foils Subaru's image makeover
Author: Hans Greimel

Subaru wanted to shine at Nurburgring, but its disappointment illustrates a point: Reshaping a brand identity is tough.

Mercedes gives dealers more advertising leeway
Author: Amy Wilson

Dealers can now focus their local promotions on any business line, not just new-car sales.

'18 Camry adds power, mpg
Author: Laurence Iliff

The re-engineered 2018 Toyota Camry will feature a big bump in fuel economy and horsepower with a new base engine and new 8-speed transmission.

Honda previews 2018 Accord
Author: David Phillips

Honda is determined to make the midsize car engaging again with its next-generation Accord.

Jaguar's compact E-Pace crossover coming in '18
Author: Richard Truett

The E-Pace compact crossover will become Jaguar's second utility vehicle next year, after the F-Pace. A third crossover, the battery-powered I-Pace, will join Jaguar's lineup after the E-Pace, but also next year.

Kia pads crossover family with tiny Stonic
Author: David Undercoffler

The subcompact Stonic, based on the same new small crossover platform as the Hyundai Kona, will slot below the Sportage in Kia's CUV lineup.

More conventional shape for Nissan Leaf
Author: Richard Truett

The 2018 Nissan Leaf, the second generation of the five-door battery-powered hatchback, is losing some of the dramatic styling on the original model.

Can Volvo's Polestar capture that Tesla magic?
Author: Katie Burke

The spinoff of Polestar could help the new performance brand escape Volvo's reputation for practicality.

Ford cuts the small car down to size
Author: Michael Martinez

Starting next year, Ford will go about a year without building a single Focus for North America — and the market may not even notice. Slumping sales have turned the car into an imported afterthought.

FCA tweaks trims on 3 sagging vehicles
Author: Larry P. Vellequette

The changes come as FCA seeks to keep consumers interested in what is the oldest product lineup of any major automaker.

Focus makes it clear: Small cars still a conundrum

Ford's decision to move production of the Focus to China shows that automakers continue to grapple with building small cars that can be sold profitably in the U.S.

Germans build here,
 take profits home

Most of the German automakers' engineers work and live in Germany and all the profit they accumulate from Americans goes back to their home country.

Store upgrades 
make a difference

There is a correlation between a fresh, image-compliant facility and client/employee satisfaction, which results in measurable higher performance.

Whose fault is it anyway?
Author: Keith Crain

We are heading into a lot of uncharted waters with autonomous vehicles. Should we be worried about Big Brother?

ZF and Hella seek 'easy and open' alliance
Author: Shiraz Ahmed

The deal, which focuses on radar and camera technology critical to self-driving vehicles, is "three sheets of paper," says ZF CEO Stefan Sommer.

What boardrooms can learn from Uber's woes
Author: Betsy Atkins

While Uber's woes make the news, they can also serve as a spark for making the support and advancement of women in your company a boardroom mission.

Carvana notches wins on Wall Street
Author: John Irwin and John Irwin

The used-car retailer, known for its vending machines, says it has a clear path to profitability and a strong brand that's making an impression.

Manheim Index rising over time

Manheim Chief Economist Tom Webb launched the Manheim Used Vehicle Value Index in 2000. Here are averages for each year.

Manheim's Webb reflects on a four-decade career
Author: John Irwin and John Irwin

On the eve of his retirement, Tom Webb, Manheim's chief economist, reflects on a four-decade auto industry career.

Why used-car pricing indexes vary
Author: John Irwin

Manheim's used-vehicle price index suggests that used prices are rising. Why is this key indicator diverging from other important pricing indexes?

Can Amazon talk its way into autos?
Author: Michael Wayland

Amazon aims to rapidly expand its presence in the auto industry through Alexa, its voice-enabled intelligent personal assistant.

Roadster adds accessories to online stores
Author: Vince Bond Jr.

A tool from the online vehicle seller allows shoppers to see how add-ons such as spoilers, LED fog lights or moon-roof visors affect the price.

Sales, service and the occasional wedding
Author: John Irwin

Lexus Escondido in California is the centerpiece of a 326,000-square-foot facility that includes a restaurant, art gallery and event space.

Legends of retail: Rick Hendrick
Author: Jamie LaReau

The megadealer's triumphs and tragedy inspire a museum devoted to his family.

Dealer anniversaries

Dealers featured this week include James Taylor of Troy Ford in Troy, Ohio; and Norris Cook, president of Norris Ford in Dundalk, Md.


Obituaries for Vic Edelbrock Jr., head of the high-performance auto parts company bearing his family's name, and Ralph Mahalak, a former dealer with stories in Michigan and Florida.

Subaru safety push targets Japan's accident patterns
Author: Naoto Okamura

Subaru's new safety technologies came in response to a very Japanese problem: Vehicle accidents involving pedestrians and seniors are more common in Japan than elsewhere.

Body on frame vs. unibody: Pros and cons
Author: David Undercoffler

A primer on body-on-frame vs. unibody construction.

Mercedes' G Wagen proves immortal
Author: David Undercoffler

Mercedes-Benz's box-on-wheels endures, despite the brand's decision to kill it.

N.Y. store's fraud suit against lender fizzles
Author: Eric Freedman

A former New York FCA dealership that sued its lender over embezzlement losses may have to look elsewhere for payment.

Congress takes field in Barcelona​

The European auto industry's movers and shakers gathered in Barcelona, Spain, for the Automotive News Europe Congress on June 20-21. They heard speakers and panelists discuss the future of the industry, mobility, changing consumer tastes and more.

Timelines for U.S. sales figures

Most automakers will report their June U.S. sales figures on Monday, July 3. But the final industry tally won't be known until July 5 because at least two brands — Kia and Bentley — will release their results that day.

840-hp Demon? Sign here, here and here

In April, Automotive News raised concerns about the 840-hp Dodge Challenger SRT Demon. Fiat Chrysler and its lawyers have similar concerns.

But how good is his monologue?

Andrew Farah, General Motors' technology chief for autonomous vehicles, held his own on 'Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me'.

Cupholders: Still being perfected

Is there an odd/unusual problem reported by a consumer that stands out more than any other? Cupholders!

For Amazon's next move, watch its Europe tests
Author: James B. Treece

Could Amazon decide to buy a dealership group or two to cover all automotive brands? It certainly has the cash.

Wanted: JLR job candidates who've got game

Jaguar Land Rover is the lastest company to use online puzzles and games to assess the talent of job applicants.

2016 Top Suppliers Supplement

Automotive News top global, Europe and North America suppliers ranked by sales of automotive original equipment parts in 2016