Retail

Are railroads snubbing autos?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Automakers frustrated by expensive delays in transporting vehicles to dealerships are about to learn whether railroads give preferential treatment to other shippers....
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Timeline: Regrowing pains

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
A look back at the events of August, September and October, 2009...
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CarMax's U-turn: A return to Web leads

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Used-car powerhouse CarMax has begun posting vehicle inventory again on AutoTrader.com and Cars.com after a 16-month hiatus. The shift underscores the challenge that new-car leader AutoNation faces in its effort to rely less on third-party lead sites....
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AutoNation won't up and quit 3rd parties

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Mike Maroone, COO of AutoNation Inc., said the dealership group intends to proceed cautiously in reducing its reliance on third-party online shopping sites....
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WHO WANTS HYBRIDS?

Falling gasoline prices make alternative-fuel vehicles a tougher sell

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
For a sign of the challenges in selling fuel efficiency as a virtue, Tanner Hulette need only look at the signs near his dealership advertising gasoline for $2.70 a gallon. Hulette, general manager of Mechanicsville Toyota near Richmond, Va., said he's seeing higher demand for pickups and SUVs, and less interest in the Prius hybrid....
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Cadillac dealers feel the heat

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Many Cadillac retailers say they've bought into the vision of Cadillac president Johan de Nysschen, who along with other top General Motors executives sold that vision during a dealer meeting last month in Las Vegas. The meeting left them inspired by promises of an abundance of product and a management philosophy that preaches product exclusivity. But others, especially lower-volume Cadillac dealers, are worried....
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FIVE YEARS LATER

Auto economists eye troubling signs on horizon

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Business is booming for auto dealers five years after the national economic crisis, so what could go wrong? Plenty, warns a number of auto industry economists....
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Impala the king of rental cars? No, not that Impala, GM says

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Since the stylish, redesigned Chevrolet Impala sedan rolled out in the spring of 2013, General Motors executives have been telling anyone who will listen that its days as a rental-lot staple are over. So this headline in The New York Times last week couldn't have gone over well at GM headquarters....
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China's policies are pushing out pickups

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
When Beijing implemented its Road Traffic Law in 2003, it granted city governments the liberty to decide whether to permit pickups to drive in their cities. A loophole in the law allowed traffic regulators in most Chinese cities to simply classify pickups as commercial vehicles and bar them from entering their cities. The practice has stifled pickup sales in China....
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Ford steers C-Max ads away from mpg

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Since Ford was forced to restate the estimated fuel economy of its C-Max Hybrid -- first in August 2013 and again in June -- the brand's marketers have rethought how to sell their hybrid-only nameplate....
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NAMAD's 2nd film chronicles history for next generation

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
The nation's largest minority dealership group has released the second in what it hopes will be a series of documentaries chronicling the history of minority dealers in the United States. The National Association of Minority Automobile Dealers released Making Tracks II in September, about nine years after the first installment in 2005....
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Pulling the plug: EV battery module exchange put to test

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
A team of engineers at the University of California, San Diego, plans to make a cross-country trip in an electric vehicle -- without plugging the car in once. Instead of going by the traditional plug-and-wait protocol for EVs, the engineers will swap out rechargeable, briefcase-size battery modules on the fly as they travel from San Diego to the coast of South Carolina in less than 60 hours....
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MIKE WOOD: How hard are you willing to work?

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Long hours and hard work in the past few years turned Mike Wood from a dealership manager into a dealer with four stores. The market has been loaded with acquisition opportunities, he says, provided the buyer is willing to put in the sweat and hustle....
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JERRY VITZTHUM: Out, in and then back out again

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Ask former small-town car dealer Jerry Vitzthum whether the auto industry is better or worse today than it was before the national economic crisis, and he shrugs....
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BILL LEA: Keep stores modern

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
"People keep asking us for our store designs," says Bill Lia, the 78-year-old CEO of Lia Auto Group in Albany, N.Y., which just finished building its 19th dealership. "We want to keep everything modern and up to date....
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FIVE-YEAR LOOK BACK

Dealers pursued opportunities from the rubble of '09

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
In the five years that have passed since the economic crash of 2009, the auto retailing sector has emerged from the ashes. The transition has been painful. There are fewer car dealers in 2014. Many have been pressed by automakers to invest in new stores. But what was a bitter industry shakeout for some in 2009 has led to better times in auto retailing in 2014 for others....
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Porsche expects to hit U.S. sales goal early

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Porsche will meet its goal of selling 50,000 vehicles in the U.S. in 2015 -- three years earlier than originally envisioned, says Andre Oosthuizen, the brand's top U.S. marketing executive. "We would foresee 2015 would definitely be the year to surpass that threshold."...
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BEST PRACTICES

A terrible wreck, but not a total loss

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Most dealerships send totaled cars straight to the junkyard. White Bear Mitsubishi put one on display, and it has been reaping the rewards ever since....
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Porsche: 918 Spyder nearly sold out

12:01 am U.S. ET | Oct. 20, 2014
Porsche's limited-run 918 Spyder is nearing sellout status. Production of the plug-in hybrid supercar's 918 promised units will end next July, and planned production is sold out through late March or early April, said Andre Oosthuizen, vice president of marketing for Porsche Cars North America Inc....
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Renault's China vehicle sales could reach 800,000 a year, Ghosn says

Oct. 18, 2014 06:01 CET
Renault, a latecomer to China, could sell up to 800,000 vehicles annually in the country, CEO Carlos Ghosn said. Renault has a 4 percent market share globally and it is a "reasonable" objective to reproduce this in China, Ghosn said....
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Porsche is first company to hire Vatican's Sistine Chapel

Oct. 17, 2014 11:41 CET
Porsche is the first company to host a corporate event in the Vatican City's Sistine Chapel after Pope Francis allowed the chapel to be rented out for private functions, with the proceeds going to charities working with the poor and homeless....
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Europe's new-car sales rise 6% on price cuts

Oct. 17, 2014 09:19 CET
Car sales in Europe rose 6 percent in September, helped by automakers' price cuts and strong demand in the region's top markets of Germany, the UK and France....
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Repairs on Corvette-swallowing sinkhole to begin in Nov.

2:55 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 17, 2014
Construction to fill the massive sinkhole that in February swallowed eight Corvettes at the National Corvette Museum in Kentucky is scheduled to begin November 10, the museum said....
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Dodge 'Scat Pack' trim revival resurrects 1968 trademark dispute

11:33 am U.S. ET | Oct. 17, 2014
Dodge's attempts to revive its muscle car-era “Scat Pack” trims may have stepped in it in the process. Chrysler Group is being sued by a California aftermarket company for infringing on its nearly 50-year-old “Scat” trademark on the Dodge Challenger and other vehicles....
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Infiniti set to name CP&B as its global advertising agency, report says

1:17 pm U.S. ET | Oct. 17, 2014
Infiniti is set to tap Crispin Porter + Bogusky as its global advertising agency after a drawn-out review, people familiar with the matter told Advertising Age, an affiliate of Automotive News....
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No. 1 store empowers, retains employees

No. 1 store empowers, retains employees

Texas dealer Greg May encourages his staffers to provide input and solve problems on their own. Mon., October 20
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