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At a Glance...
Top Stories
Bush Rules on Fuel Economy Hit from 2 Sides
Car Leasing's Fall Means Cost Climb for Consumer
Obama: 1M Hybrids on Road by 2015
Toyota Unit Cuts Staff Amid Weak U.S. Sales
Opinion: At $4 a Gallon, the Price Is Right
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 Lenovo ThinkPad Notebooks
Top Stories
Bush Rules on Fuel Economy Hit from 2 Sides

At the first public hearing on the rules Monday, critics accused the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration of using false assumptions about gas prices and environmental impacts when it set the proposed fuel economy standards. For their part, auto industry officials insisted that the standards are so aggressive, they might be tough for some automakers to meet. David Westcott, a Buick and Pontiac dealer from North Carolina who spoke on behalf of the National Automobile Dealers Association, noted that new vehicle sales have plummeted to a two-decade low as cash-strapped consumers are having trouble getting the credit needed to make a purchase. He warned that if adding new fuel-saving technologies increases the price of vehicles, it could keep many Americans from trading in their older, less efficient cars and trucks. Regulators "need to look at fleet turnover," Westcott said.
Source:  San Francisco Chronicle

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Car Leasing's Fall Means Cost Climb for Consumer

A shakeout in the auto leasing industry that revved up with Chrysler's exit from the leasing business last week is expected to be felt quickly by consumers who enjoy switching vehicles every two or three years without down payments or other ownership obligations. The used SUVs and other gas-guzzlers that the companies' financing arms sell when leases expire are fetching far less than initially expected, now that gas has surged to $4 a gallon. The news isn't entirely bleak. Economy cars, holding their value well because of better gas mileage, are expected to be readily available and lease for roughly their current average price of $340 per month. Industry experts predict that dealers will soon have a dramatically changed mix of cars available for leasing or buying as manufacturers produce fewer trucks and SUVs and more compact cars, hybrids and diesels.
Source:  Associated Press

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Obama: 1M Hybrids on Road by 2015

He supports $4B in fed aid to automakers to speed up development
LANSING -- Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama said Monday the nation should set a goal of putting 1 million plug-in electric hybrid vehicles on the road by 2015, offering $4 billion in federal aid to meet the ambitious goal. But auto experts said the expense of meeting such goals will far exceed that amount, and that the plug-in hybrid goal will be difficult, if not impossible, to achieve. "I know how much the auto industry and the auto workers of this state have struggled over the last decade or so," Obama said. "But I also know where I want the fuel-efficient cars of tomorrow to be built: Not in Japan, not in China, but right here in the United States of America. Right here in the state of Michigan."
Source:  The Detroit News

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Toyota Unit Cuts Staff Amid Weak U.S. Sales

TOKYO -- A production unit of Toyota Motor Corp. said Tuesday it laid off about 800 contract workers in June and August to reduce production of vehicles bound for North America, as car sales in the U.S. continue to slump. However, a spokesman at Toyota Motor Kyushu Inc. said it will rehire 500 contract staff in the autumn or afterward to prepare to increase output, indicating it expects the production adjustment to end in several months. Toyota last week cut its U.S. sales projection for this year to 2.44 million vehicles from its previous plan of 2.64 million.
Source:  The Wall Street Journal (Subscription required.)

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Opinion: At $4 a Gallon, the Price Is Right
by Warren Brown

Politicians and pundits would be wise to forgo celebration of recent declines in crude oil prices. They would be wiser still to support federal legislation that would keep pump prices at a minimum of $4 a gallon for regular unleaded gasoline. Pricey gasoline is bringing a discipline to the marketplace that is long overdue. It is doing what the politicians and all of their phony corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) regulations have failed to do. Americans have driven 10 billion fewer miles this year than in 2007. That's less oil-based fuel burned, less tailpipe pollution spewed. Sales of cars and trucks with more fuel-economical four-cylinder engines are soaring. All major car companies are redoubling their efforts to roll out more fuel-efficient vehicles. There is now in the global automotive industry an excitement about fuel economy that rivals the emotion of the industry's legendary horsepower wars. That is a very good thing. And it is happening because of what is happening in the world's most lucrative automotive market -- the United States of America.
Source:  The Washington Post

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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. 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 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.

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 Lenovo ThinkPad Notebooks

 Click here for savings

NADA members can save up to 36 percent on select ThinkPad notebooks from Lenovo in three ways:

  • Instant savings with discounted Web pricing
  • Save even more with your NADA discount
  • Enter eCoupon USXBACKTOSCHOOL at checkout

To take advantage of these savings, visit NADA's PC Purchase Program online (member login required), then click on www.lenovo.com/shop/deals/nada or call 800.426.7235, Option 1, Ext. 4838. Free ground shipping is available on all Web orders.

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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
 
Regulators "need to look at fleet turnover." 

    -- David Westcott, a Buick and Pontiac dealer from North Carolina, referring to proposed fuel economy standards. Westcott, speaking on behalf of NADA, warned that if adding new fuel-saving technologies increases the price of vehicles, it could keep many Americans from trading in their older, less efficient cars and trucks, San Francisco Chronicle, August 5


"Pricey gasoline is bringing a discipline to the marketplace that is long overdue. It is doing what the politicians and all of their phony corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) regulations have failed to do."

   
-- Warren Brown, syndicated columnist, pointing out that high gas prices have prompted Americans to drive 10 billion fewer miles this year, The Washington Post, August 3


"But I also know where I want the fuel-efficient cars of tomorrow to be built: Not in Japan, not in China, but right here in the United States of America."

   
-- Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama, suggesting the nation should set a goal of putting 1 million plug-in electric hybrid vehicles on the road by 2015. He also supports legislation offering $4 billion in federal aid to meet the ambitious goal, The Detroit News, August 5
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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