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Top Stories
US Auto Sales Slump to 16-Year Low in July
GM Posts $15.5B 2Q Loss, 3rd-worst in its History
News Analysis: Automakers Race Time as Their Cash Runs Low
Opinion: 1 Week's Notice: Chrysler Dealers Deserved Better
NHTSA Rarity: Hearing on CAFE and Climate
San Francisco British Car Dealer Installs Solar Panels
NADA Update
NADA Offers Fuel-Saving Tire Checks on Capitol Hill
NADA Convention Registration Now Open
New Executive Education Class at Babson College Begins in January
NADA Publication Provides Guidance on New FTC 'Red Flags Rule'
NADA Management Education Video Helps Dealers Create Special Finance Operations
Save on HP Printers and Notebooks
Top Stories
US Auto Sales Slump to 16-Year Low in July

DETROIT - U.S. auto sales slumped to a 16-year low in July as automakers failed to keep up with consumers' growing demand for smaller, more fuel-efficient vehicles. While production changes may help that problem, trouble in the credit and auto leasing markets will continue to take a toll on sales. General Motors, Ford, Toyota and other automakers said Friday that their U.S. sales fell by double-digits. Nissan Motor Co. was the only major automaker to report a gain, with truck sales up 18 percent thanks in part to the new Rogue crossover and a boost in incentives. Nissan's overall sales rose 8.5 percent. July's seasonally adjusted sales rate — which shows what sales would be if they continued at the same pace for the full year — was 12.5 million vehicles, according to Autodata Corp. That's down from 17 million as recently as 2005. "We expect the second half of 2008 will be more challenging than the first half as economic and credit conditions weaken," Ford's marketing chief, Jim Farley, said in a statement.
Source:  Associated Press

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GM Posts $15.5B 2Q Loss, 3rd-worst in its History

GM on Friday reported a $15.5 billion second-quarter loss, the third-worst quarterly performance in its nearly 100-year history. Through the first half of the year it used up more than $7 billion in cash, including $3.6 billion from April through June. Company officials seem optimistic that a combination of expense cuts, increased car production and the introduction of new vehicles will slow the cash burn and eventually return GM to the black. But they're still prepared for an economic downturn that could last until 2010. "Ultimately we're going to have to grow the business in a tough market," conceded Chief Financial Officer Ray Young. The company said its loss included $9.1 billion in one-time charges, including $3.3 billion for the buyouts of 19,000 U.S. hourly workers, most of whom left at the end of June.
Source:  Associated Press

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News Analysis: Automakers Race Time as Their Cash Runs Low

DETROIT — The downturn in the American auto industry is rapidly becoming a full-blown fight for survival among Detroit’s big automakers. G.M. and Ford had expected economic conditions to improve in the second half of this year, but now are forecasting an even more dismal sales environment. Neither company appears in immediate danger of failure. But analysts say Detroit is in a race against time. “Things are pretty bad, and the river is getting deeper, faster and wider,” said David Cole, chairman of the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor, Mich. “The question is, can they get to [the] other side before the cash runs out?”
Source:  The New York Times

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Opinion: 1 Week's Notice: Chrysler Dealers Deserved Better
by Automotive News

Chrysler LLC dealers were shocked by the July 25 announcement that Chrysler Financial is getting out of the leasing business. And they were stunned by the breathtaking speed with which the change is to take effect. Dealers were given exactly one week's notice. That's not good enough. "We have six days to change our business model," complained one dealer. Dealers face a period of uncertainty while waiting to see whether Chrysler can come up with retail incentives that will lure customers who found leasing so attractive. Cerberus/Chrysler owes dealers better in the future.
Source:  Automotive News (Subscription required.)

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NHTSA Rarity: Hearing on CAFE and Climate

WASHINGTON -- In a rare event, witnesses are scheduled to testify Monday on the importance of federal fuel economy standards to the environment. In the past, federal regulators have said standards would have only modest effects and that a full analysis of their environmental impact was unnecessary. But last year, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that standards adopted for 2008-11 light trucks were fatally flawed. The court said the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration had not fully analyzed environmental effects or assigned a value to the benefits of lower greenhouse gas emissions. The ruling came too late to force changes in the 2008-11 standards. But NHTSA is preparing a draft environmental impact statement for its proposed 2011-15 standards. Monday’s hearing is on the draft statement developed by NHTSA. The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers sees the hearing as an opportunity to reaffirm its support for a single national standard rather than state-by-state rules, spokesman Charles Territo said. Other scheduled industry witnesses represent the National Automobile Dealers Association and BG Automotive Group...
Source:  Automotive News (Subscription required.)

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San Francisco British Car Dealer Installs Solar Panels

British Motor Car Distributors, which sells Jaguars, Bentleys and other luxury imports, has added the largest set of solar panels of any business in San Francisco. The Van Ness Avenue dealership mounted 1,606 175-watt solar panels on top of two carports on the roof of its building, a historic structure designed by Bernard Maybeck in 1927. The solar panels are expected to provide 370,000 kilowatt hours of electricity annually, enough to satisfy 80 percent of British Motors' needs each year. They will also provide ultraviolet and weather protection for the dealership's automobiles.
Source:  San Francisco Chronicle

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NADA Update
NADA Offers Fuel-Saving Tire Checks on Capitol Hill

With high gas prices on the minds of members of Congress, NADA and the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers teamed up last week with Congressman Vern Ehlers (R-Mich.) to educate congressional staff on fuel-conserving tips and provide complimentary tire checks.

“The Energy Department estimates that 1.2 billion gallons of fuel were wasted due to under-inflated tires in 2005," said David Regan, NADA vice president of legislative affairs. "Proper tire inflation is a simple step consumers can take to cut costs and improve vehicle safety."

Congressman Ehlers -- a ranking member of the House Administration Committee, which is responsible for day-to-day functions of the House of Representatives -- helped organize the tire pressure checks with NADA and local technicians from Jack Fitzgerald Auto Mall in Bethesda, Md. The event was part of NADA’s ongoing efforts to educate policymakers and the public on fuel-saving tips and environmental issues. For more information, visit www.nada.org/green.

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NADA Convention Registration Now Open

 

New Orleans -- the site of the 2009 NADA Convention & Exposition January 24-27 -- is ready for dealers to return. "The heart and the core of New Orleans ... looks better than it did before ... [Katrina]," says Stephen Perry, president and CEO, New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau. The NADA convention committee recently met in New Orleans to see firsthand the city's progress. "New Orleans is definitely ready for the dealers to come back," says Annette Sykora, NADA chairman.

In 2007, New Orleans hosted 7.1 million visitors. Since Hurricane Katrina, $700 million has been invested in hotel renovations. More restaurants (913) are open in the city today than before the storm. And the French Quarter is cleaner than ever. "From the time you enter the city, you can see that everything has been revitalized," says Jeff Carlson, chairman of the NADA convention committee.

The theme of the convention is "Committed to Community." Putting the theme into action, the NADA Charitable Foundation contributed $400,000 in May to the Brees Dream Foundation (founded by Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints quarterback) to complete the restoration of the athletic fields at Lusher High School, the city's largest public high school.

Already hotel reservations are going fast. Be sure to take a moment now to register. 

Click here to register online or for more information.

 Click here for the video that shows just how much progress New Orleans has made since Katrina.

[Editor's Note: In recognition of tough economic times, registration fees and hotel rates have remained unchanged, and discounted airfare is available. More than 700 exhibitors, 150 dealer workshops, a heavy-weight lineup of speakers and an additional half-day of workshops, including "Lifeline to Profit$" (offered both Friday and Tuesday) are slated for the NADA convention.]

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New Executive Education Class at Babson College Begins in January

Applications for a new Dealer Executive Education class scheduled to begin in January 2009 at Babson College are due October 1. For applications received on or before September 1, the $600 application fee may be applied toward the initial installment payment for tuition and fees.

Babson is the preeminent provider of entrepreneurial executive education training in the United States. It has been ranked No. 1 in entrepreneurship for 13 consecutive years by U.S. News & World Report. The customized six-module program focuses on leadership, management and entrepreneurship for the retail side of the automotive and truck industry. All six-week long classes are being held on campus at the Babson Executive Education Center over a 16-month period. "Ideal candidates for the program are individuals who are in a position to effect change within the dealership," says Allan Jones, director of the NADA dealer academy. "This is a lot more than just changing your dealership. This is about becoming a better leader," said executive education student Jared Hamilton of Henry Day Ford in Sandy, Utah.

Visit www.DealerExecEd.org to enroll and find out more about the program or contact Dealer Academy Director Allan Jones at (703) 821-7210 or ajones@nada.org.

  Click here to view a brief video on the Babson program.

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NADA Publication Provides Guidance on New FTC 'Red Flags Rule'

McLEAN, Va. — In response to the Federal Trade Commission's new Red Flags Rule — under which most dealers and other creditors must develop and implement a comprehensive identity theft prevention program by November 1 — NADA Management Education has released a new guide to assist with U.S. dealer compliance.

A Dealer Guide to the FTC Red Flags and Address Discrepancy Rules: Protecting Against Identity Theft (L50) explains the requirements under the Rule, and includes detailed, step-by-step guidance on developing the written program required under the Red Flags Rule, as well as a sample written program, worksheets and other helpful materials. All members will soon receive one free copy of the full guide in the mail. The sample written program is also being made available to members — free upon request, subject to terms and conditions — as a Word document to aid dealers in developing written programs specific to their dealerships in advance of the compliance deadline.

To receive these materials, contact me@nada.org with your request and member identification number. Additional copies of the guide, as well as a PDF version, are available to members for $40 each. The guide is also available to nonmembers for $80 each. The guide also will serve as the basis for two virtual seminars on the Red Flags Rule. Register for the seminars, to be held twice — August 26 and September 23 — at www.nada.org/seminars, or call (800) 248-6232, ext. 7061. For further information, visit the NADA Management Education online catalog at www.nada.org/mecatalog or call (703) 821-7227.
Source: NADA Newswire

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NADA Management Education Video Helps Dealers Create Special Finance Operations

In response to a growing special finance market, NADA Management Education has released a new video training program on establishing a special finance department in the dealership. "Creating a Special Finance Operation: Doing it Right" (VT20) illustrates the key steps dealers and managers need to follow in order to build a special finance operation. Video segments—which include advice from experienced managers and dealers—cover staff appointment, the process of selling to the special finance customer, inventory and marketing. An additional case study reveals how one particular dealership succeeded in the special finance market. A 27-page study guide is offered as a companion piece to the DVD. The guide serves as a reference on establishing, running and marketing a special finance department, and includes a special finance quiz. The DVD and study guide are available for $169. Additional information and a four-minute preview are available at www.nada.org/specialfinance. For further inquiries, call NADA Management Education at (703) 821-7227.

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Save on HP Printers and Notebooks

 

NADA members can save $200 on HP Color LaserJet printers CP4005n and CP4005dn. Members can also save $200 on HP Compaq 6515b notebook PCs with broadband wireless service. To take advantage of these savings, visit NADA's PC Purchase Program and click "HP" (member login required).

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Featured Video
 

Registration for the NADA convention in New Orleans Jan. 24-27 is now open. Click here to see just how much progress New Orleans has made since Katrina.


More Video Highlights

Quotable
 
"We expect the second half of 2008 will be more challenging than the first half as economic and credit conditions weaken." 

    -- Ford's marketing chief, Jim Farley, responding to industry-wide sales figures released Friday, Associated Press, August 2


"We have six days to change our business model." 

   
-- A Chrysler dealer, responding to the automaker's announcement last week to get out of the leasing business, Automotive News, August 4


"... the river is getting deeper, faster and wider. The question is, can they get to [the] other side before the cash runs out?"

    -- David Cole, chairman of the Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor, Mich., referring to economic conditions of GM and Ford, The New York Times, August 2
Video Highlights
 
  
NADA and "SeeMore's Playhouse" Promote Child Passenger Safety Month in September.
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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NADA For more information on NADA, visit www.nada.org or contact NADA, 8400 Westpark Drive, McLean, VA 22102. This email may contain an advertisement of NADA products and services. Any opinions or statements contained herein do not necessarily reflect the views of NADA. Factual errors are the responsibility of the listed publication. If you are a franchised new-car or -truck dealer and would like to become a member of NADA, please visit the Join NADA section of www.nada.org. Questions or comments concerning NADA Headlines content may be directed to media@nada.org.