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Wednesday, August 20, 2008 RSSSEND TO A FRIENDPRINT
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At a Glance...
Top Stories
"Green Checkups" Focus Attention on Fuel-Saving Maintenance
Owner Gives Executives Time to Fix Chrysler
GM Steps Up Warranty on Used Vehicles
Ford Employees Test Future Cars
Toyota Plans Hybrids for All Product Lines
Business Fights New Rules for Imports
Opinion: McCain: I'll Work with Detroit's Automakers
NADA Update
Convention Registration is off to a Strong Start
NADA Insurance Announces New Plan for Retiring and Career-Changing Dealers
STAR Answers Dealers' Questions about Dealership Data Security
Lenovo PCs Power Beijing 2008 Olympic Games
Top Stories
"Green Checkups" Focus Attention on Fuel-Saving Maintenance

McLEAN, Va. – Dealers in 36 states have signed up to become “Green Checkup” dealers, bringing the total number to 160 since the Green Checkup campaign was officially launched at a news conference in Denver on Monday, Aug. 18. “It’s encouraging to see so many members sign up to become Green Checkup dealers at such a fast pace,” says Annette Sykora, chairman of the National Automobile Dealers Association. “NADA members are responding with enthusiasm,” she added.

NADA is urging its members to offer free Green Checkups at their dealerships. The “Green Checkup” focuses on the things that have the most effect on fuel economy, such as oil and air filters, engine performance, tire pressure and emission controls. September is being promoted as Green Checkup Month, but dealers can offer Green Checkups as part of their routine service year-round.

“With high fuel prices and greenhouse gas emissions on the minds of many Americans, the incentive has never been greater for motorists to invest in the kind of maintenance that improves fuel economy,” Sykora says. To help dealers raise public awareness of how the auto industry is increasing fuel economy through innovation and new technologies, NADA created the Toolkit “A New Car is a Green Car.” The toolkit includes tips on hosting Green Checkup events and case studies that offer “greenprints” for success.
Source: NADA Newswire

To sign up to become a Green Checkup Dealer, click here.

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Owner Gives Executives Time to Fix Chrysler

With all Chrysler’s problems, the industry has been rife with speculation about whether Cerberus would decide it had made an ill-timed bet and sell the company. But top Chrysler executives say they are determined to fix the company, and Cerberus executives say they will get the chance. Their plan hinges on a wave of new offerings beginning in 2010, and a mix of cars better suited to the times, to help spur another comeback for a company with a long history of them.
Source:  The New York Times

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GM Steps Up Warranty on Used Vehicles

General Motors Corp., looking to win over customers wary of Detroit-built cars and trucks, said it will offer a one-year/12,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty on used vehicles. The guarantee applies to all GM Certified Used Vehicles from Buick, Chevrolet, GMC and Pontiac sold in the U.S. going back to the 2003 model year. Saturn Certified Pre-Owned Vehicles will get the same warranty. "We've upped our game and made significant strides in quality," said Jamie Hresko, GM North America vice president of quality. "This shows GM's confidence." The warranty will cover any vehicle defect outside normal wear and tear.
Source:  The Wall Street Journal (Subscription required.)

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Ford Employees Test Future Cars

In an effort to re-energize confidence in the company's future, Ford Motor Co. has been shuttling hundreds of employees and retirees to its top-secret test track in Dearborn almost every afternoon, to drive the company's promising vehicles of the future. The "Drive One" effort began last week and will wrap up Aug. 28, after an estimated 4,000 employees and retirees have had the rare experience of driving vehicles like the next-generation Mustang and Fusion that are to go on sale early next year and have not been revealed to the public. Jason Wesolowski, 28, a layout engineer in Ford's manufacturing operations, said he appreciated the effort to lift employees' spirits.
Source:  Detroit Free Press

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Toyota Plans Hybrids for All Product Lines

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. -- Toyota Motor Corp. is “real confident that by 2020 we’ll have hybrid models in each of our product lines,” said Justin Ward, advanced powertrain program manager at the Toyota Technical Center. Challenges remain. He said Toyota has made “huge progress” in fuel cell stack durability, but “we’re not anywhere near where we need to be.” The fuel cell stack is heavy, and costs are high. And questions remain, such as: “Where does that hydrogen come from? How do you store it and move it around?”
Source:  Automotive News (Subscription required.)

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Business Fights New Rules for Imports

Carmakers say Customs proposal would disrupt 'just in time' shipping of parts across the oceans
WASHINGTON -- Automakers and major business groups are mounting a spirited effort to convince the Bush Administration to soften a proposal that would require the collection of detailed information about imports to the United States. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection Bureau wants shippers to collect 10 new categories of data for U.S.-bound cargo 24 hours before it's loaded on ships in foreign countries, as well as to provide data about the physical location of cargo aboard a U.S.-bound vessel and status messages that report container movements. The agency, known as CBP, proposed the so-called "10+2" rule in January... The CBP says the rule is needed to prevent a nightmare scenario such as importation of weapons of mass destruction by terrorists. Automakers say the rule could upset the delicate "just in time" shipping of parts to arrive at auto factories as they are needed for vehicle production, which saves the companies the cost of stockpiling parts.
Source:  The Detroit News

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Opinion: McCain: I'll Work with Detroit's Automakers
by John McCain

Tax credits for alternative-fuel vehicles will help revive industry
American automakers, their parts suppliers and the region's economy are facing hard times. We must ensure that the American auto industry rebounds successfully. We need a real energy policy... I will expand domestic production of oil and natural gas -- addressing a source of distress for America's families: high gas prices. High energy prices are diminishing Americans' purchasing power, slowing new car purchases, raising the costs of vehicle production and are a leading cause of the American automotive industry's current challenges. We need to free Detroit's fortunes from the decisions of petro-dictators and world oil markets. With a transition to alternative-fuel vehicles, we can rejuvenate the auto industry, drive cheaply and cleanly and be more secure. I will bring customers to the showroom with up to $5,000 in tax credits to encourage the purchase of these cleaner cars. The American auto industry's leaders and workers are determined to overcome the present challenges. If the industry should need federal assistance, I will consider any reasonable proposal they develop that moves the industry to a more stable and prosperous future. The bottom line is that the American automotive industry is a critical part of our nation's economy...
Source: The Detroit News

[Editor's Note: John McCain is a U.S. senator from Arizona and the Republican nominee for president.]

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NADA Update
Convention Registration is off to a Strong Start

 

Registration for the 2009 NADA Convention & Exposition in New Orleans January 24-27 is open. 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 convention. Since Hurricane Katrina, more than $1 billion has been invested in hotel renovations. More than 900 restaurants are open in the city today than before Katrina, and the French Quarter is cleaner than ever. "The heart and the core of New Orleans ... looks better than it did before the storm," said Stephen Perry, president and CEO, New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau. Hotels rooms are selling out fast. Be sure to take a moment now to register by clicking here.

 Click here to see just how much progress New Orleans has made since Katrina.

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NADA Insurance Announces New Plan for Retiring and Career-Changing Dealers

NADA Insurance is offering a new, two-year continuation of NADA's Dealer Life Insurance plan for members who are either retiring or transitioning out of the retail-automotive industry. "In the spirit of supporting dealers who have been loyal clients of NADA's insurance programs over the years, this new program is available to them once they are no longer NADA members," says Lin Peacock, vice president of NADA Insurance. The plan is available to members who have been NADA Insurance clients for a minimum of five years. The current policy and premiums remain the same. No additional applications or underwriting are necessary. To learn more about this new enhancement to the NADA Dealer Life Insurance plan, call NADA Insurance at (888) 461-6232.

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STAR Answers Dealers' Questions about Dealership Data Security

 

Standards for Technology in Automotive Retail (STAR) has developed new guidelines to help dealers evaluate their Dealership Data Security. Visit STAR's Dealer Infrastructure Guidelines (DIG) publication for more information. To learn how dealerships should test their security plans click here.

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Lenovo PCs Power Beijing 2008 Olympic Games

  

Lenovo, a major sponsor of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, is providing 30,000 computers to power all aspects of the games. Imagine what they can do for you! NADA members can save up to 36 percent on select ThinkPad notebooks with eCoupon USXBACKTOSCHOOL at checkout. This offer ends August 25. 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.

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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
 
"It's encouraging to see so many members sign up to become Green Checkup dealers at such a fast pace."

   
-- Annette Sykora, NADA chairman, referring to about 160 dealers in 36 states signing up for the campaign since it was announced Monday at a news conference in Denver, NADA Newswire, Aug. 20


"We've upped our game and made significant strides in quality. This shows GM's confidence."

    -- Jamie Hresko, GM North America vice president of quality, explaining the rationale for the one-year/12,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty on used vehicles, The Wall Street Journal, Aug. 20


Toyota has made "huge progress" in fuel cell stack durability, but "we're not anywhere near where we need to be." The fuel cell stack is heavy, and costs are high. And questions remain, such as: "Where does that hydrogen come from? How do you store it and move it around?"

   
-- Justin Ward, advanced powertrain program manager at the Toyota Technical Center, Automotive News, Aug. 18
Video Highlights
 
  
NADA's New Orleans Project: Lusher Charter School


NADA's Return to New Orleans
NADA and "SeeMore's Playhouse" Promote Child Passenger Safety Month in September
 


Click here for more NADA-TV reports.

 
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