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Top Stories
Toyota Beats GM in Worldwide Sales in First Half
Ford Posts $8.7B 2Q Loss on Asset Write-downs
J.D. Power Lowers U.S. Sales Forecast to 14.2 Million
Chrysler Plans to Cut 1,000 Salaried Jobs
Used SUV and Pickup Truck Prices Continue Historic Decline in Second Quarter 08; Passenger Car Values Climb
Saying 'No' Worked for Mazda: Sales are Stable
Automakers May Reap $30 Million Credit Under New Tax Rule
Start-stop Technology to Get Wide Use, Execs Predict
NADA Update
Auto Dealers Invited to SEMA Show to Learn about $38 Billion Market
Lenovo Offers NADA Members Savings on ThinkPad Notebooks
Top Stories
Toyota Beats GM in Worldwide Sales in First Half

DETROIT - Toyota beat General Motors in worldwide sales in the first half of the year. Toyota Motor Corp. said Wednesday it sold 4.8 million vehicles between January and June, up 2 percent from the same period a year ago. General Motors Corp. says it sold 4.5 million vehicles in the same period, or about 300,000 less than Toyota. GM says its total sales fell 3 percent in the first half of the year due to economic pressures and labor disruptions in the U.S. market. But the automaker says it posted record-breaking sales in other regions, including Latin America, Asia and Europe. GM narrowly beat Toyota in total sales last year to retain the title of the world's largest automaker by sales.
Source:  Associated Press

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Ford Posts $8.7B 2Q Loss on Asset Write-downs

DEARBORN, Mich. - Ford Motor Co. said Thursday it lost $8.67 billion in the second quarter largely because of a reduction in the value of assets. The company also announced that it will bring six European small car models to North America by the end of 2012 as it deals with a market shift from trucks to cars brought on by high gasoline prices. The company also will retool two more U.S. truck and sport utility vehicle plants to build small, fuel-efficient vehicles. The loss includes $8 billion worth of write-offs because of a decline in value of North American assets and Ford Motor Credit Co.'s lease portfolio. Ford's second-quarter revenue was $38.6 billion, down $5.6 billion from the year-ago period.
Source:  Associated Press

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J.D. Power Lowers U.S. Sales Forecast to 14.2 Million

Following the lead of automakers and analysts, J.D. Power and Associates has cut its projection of 2008 U.S. light-vehicle sales to 14.2 million units. That is down 750,000 units from the 14.95 million that Power projected earlier this year and down from the 16.2 million units sold in 2007. Automakers, including General Motors, have slashed their sales forecasts in recent months. Last week, GM said it expects U.S. light-vehicle sales of 14 million units in 2008 and 2009. Power cited deteriorating economic conditions, the prolonged credit crisis and $4-a-gallon gasoline for causing consumers to stall on buying new vehicles. Lower fleet sales by automakers also were blamed.
Source:  Automotive News (Subscription required.)

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Chrysler Plans to Cut 1,000 Salaried Jobs

DETROIT -- Chrysler LLC said Wednesday it will cut 1,000 salaried jobs worldwide by Sept. 30 as it tries to return to profitability amid a severe downturn in U.S. sales. The automaker announced the cuts in a letter to employees. Chrysler spokesman David Elshoff said the company hopes most of the cuts will be accomplished through early retirements, attrition and voluntary separation programs, but he said involuntary layoffs will be considered if the company fails to meet its targets. Chrysler's U.S. sales fell 22 percent in the first six months of this year as customers shunned its trucks and sport utility vehicles in favor of smaller, more fuel-efficient cars.
Source:  Associated Press

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Used SUV and Pickup Truck Prices Continue Historic Decline in Second Quarter 08; Passenger Car Values Climb

Major Market Shifts Driven by High Fuel Costs, Low Consumer Confidence
McLean, Va. -- The average wholesale price of used vehicles sold at auctions declined for SUVs, pickup trucks, crossover utility vehicles (CUVs) and vans in the second quarter of 2008 from the first quarter of the year, while used passenger car prices increased, according to NADA AuctionNet data released by the NADA Used Car Guide... The data reflects a continuing shift in demand by consumers and automobile dealers to more fuel-efficient vehicles as gas prices climb and consumer confidence falls. Used pickup truck and SUV prices led the declines, with wholesale prices falling 11.2 and 9.6 percent respectively on 1-to-5 year old vehicles. They were followed by CUVs and vans, with values falling 3.8 and 3.0 percent respectively. 
Source:  NADA Newswire

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Saying 'No' Worked for Mazda: Sales are Stable

DETROIT -- Jim O’Sullivan, Mazda’s top U.S. executive, recalls a time when auto dealers suggested the company make a pickup. Call it the M-150, dealers said. They wanted something like the then-top-selling F-150 made by Ford Motor Co., Mazda’s partial owner. Good thing he didn’t listen. “We couldn’t go there with Mazda because it didn’t fit the brand,” O’Sullivan told Automotive News. “A lot of manufacturers went there. For Ford, it’s natural. But a lot of Asian-based manufacturers recently were looking at jumping into the fray. Some have, and now some of them are backing up.” Mazda stuck to cars, and now O’Sullivan says it may be on its way to flat sales for the year in a market when nearly everyone else will be down.
Source:  Automotive News (Subscription required.)

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Automakers May Reap $30 Million Credit Under New Tax Rule

WASHINGTON -- Detroit's Big Three automakers each stand to claim up to $30 million in tax credits under a bill that could become law by the end of the week, officials said Wednesday. The U.S. House passed a housing bill 272-152 late Wednesday that includes a provision allowing unprofitable companies to get credit for up to $30 million in capital investments. An earlier stimulus bill gave profitable companies $45 billion in depreciation credits for investments made during the year. Instead of the depreciation credits, unprofitable companies could accelerate R&D tax credits or alternative minimum credits in lieu of the depreciation provisions. The Senate passed a similar version of the housing bill July 11; President Bush said he would support the House bill, which will be taken up by the Senate later this week. The provision was sponsored by Sens. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) and George Voinovich (R-Ohio.) "By giving an investment incentive to those companies most in need of new investment, the Stabenow-Voinovich provision will encourage economic growth," said Bruce Andrews, Ford's vice president for governmental affairs.
Source:  The Detroit News

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Start-stop Technology to Get Wide Use, Execs Predict

A key piece of technology from gasoline-electric hybrid vehicles will become almost universal in new cars within five to 10 years, top environmental executives from Chrysler LLC, Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Corp. predicted Wednesday. The technology, called autostop or start-stop, automatically switches the engine off but keeps accessories such as climate control and the radio running when a car is idling. It reduces fuel consumption and emissions. All hybrids today use the system, but demands for higher fuel efficiency and lower emissions will lead to its use on virtually all vehicles, the experts said at an event to announce NextCruise, an event at which nine automakers will showcase their environmental and alternate-fuel vehicles... "Start-stop will not just be in hybrids anymore within five years," said Jay Iyengar, Chrysler senior manager of hybrid system integration. "From Chrysler's perspective, we expect to see it pretty much everywhere. "In 10 years, you'll be looked at as low-tech if your car runs at idle," she said, adding that some cities are already considering banning vehicles whose engines run when stationary. "It will begin with heavy trucks, but it will spread."
Source:  Detroit Free Press

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NADA Update
Auto Dealers Invited to SEMA Show to Learn about $38 Billion Market

DIAMOND BAR, Calif. -- While the nation’s new-car and -truck dealers continue to make major investments in their dealerships to improve sales and customer satisfaction, one area of potential new business has remained relatively untapped—the $38 billion accessory market. That’s why Phil Brady, president of the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA), and Chris Kersting, president and CEO of the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA), have announced a first-of-its-kind, comprehensive “Dealer Day” program designed exclusively for NADA members at the 2008 SEMA Show.  The half-day program is scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 5 at the Las Vegas Convention Center. There is no cost to attend “Dealer Day.”  “At a time when many dealers are looking for new ways to generate additional revenue and sales, this program will provide dealers with new ideas and strategies to help improve their bottom-line performance by creating profitable accessory programs,” says Brady. To register or receive more information about the program, e-mail dealerlink@sema.org.
Source:  NADA Newswire

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Lenovo Offers NADA Members Savings on ThinkPad Notebooks

 

NADA members can save up to $650 on ThinkPad notebooks by using the eCoupon USXSUMMERHEAT at checkout until July 29. To take advantage of the discount, visit NADA's PC Purchase Program Web site (member login required), then click on the link for Lenovo or call 1-800-426-7235, Option 1, Ext. 4838. Enter eCoupon USXSUMMERHEAT at checkout. Free ground shipping is available on all Web orders.

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NADA and "SeeMore's Playhouse" Team Up to Promote Child Passenger Safety

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Quotable
 
"The weak performance seen in June 2008 is expected to carry over into July, and year-over-year comparisons mark June as the weakest month on a seasonally adjusted annualized rate since 1993." 

    -- Jeff Schuster, J.D. Power's executive director of automotive forecasting, Automotive News, July 24


"In light of an expected prolonging of the current market conditions, the company has made the difficult decision to revisit the current staffing levels in both its salaried and supplemental work force."

    -- A Chrysler statement on reasons it has decided to cut its workforce, Associated Press, July 23


"In 10 years, you'll be looked at as low-tech if your car runs at idle."

    -- Jay Iyengar, Chrysler senior manager of hybrid system integration, referring to the increasing prevalence of start-stop technology in vehicles across the board, Detroit Free Press, July 24 

Video Highlights
 
 
Click here to watch "New Orleans is Back," a video that shows just how much progress New Orleans has made since Katrina. NADA's annual Convention & Expo returns to New Orleans Jan. 24-27.

NADA's New Orleans Project: Lusher Charter School
NADA's Return to New Orleans
NADA Chief Economist Forecasts a Challenging '08
Click here for more NADA-TV reports.
 
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