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At a Glance...
Top Stories
Auto Industry to Blitz for Aid
U.S. Auto Sales Woes Continue
Looming Cuts Worry Lincoln Mercury Dealers
Advocates Push Auto Fleets Toward Propane
Opinion: It's Show and Tell for Auto Industry in Washington
NADA Update
Sign Up Today to Become a Green Checkup Dealer
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
Auto Industry to Blitz for Aid

WASHINGTON -- Detroit automakers, the UAW and their allies on Capitol Hill will launch an all-out blitz over the next few weeks for up to $50 billion in government loans over the next three years -- money the companies say would help them survive one of their darkest periods. "It's a top priority for us," said Ziad Ojakli, Ford Motor Co.'s group vice president for government and community relations. "The market has shifted dramatically, and the companies are transforming to keep pace. But what we need to do to complete the transformation is to have access to capital." One big step for the automakers came Friday afternoon, when [presidential candidate John] McCain said he would support funding some of the loans the Detroit automakers and their suppliers seek.
Source:  Detroit Free Press

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U.S. Auto Sales Woes Continue

U.S. auto makers are expected to report big declines in August domestic sales despite stepped-up incentives, according to research firm J.D. Power & Associates, though industrywide sales are expected to improve slightly from July's moribund rate. The J.D. Power report, based on sales through Aug. 17, estimates sales for the month will come in at around 1.21 million vehicles, or 13.4 million vehicles on a seasonally adjusted annual rate. That is down from the August 2007 seasonally adjusted rate of 16.2 million vehicles, but up 6.3% from July. The average time a vehicle sat on the lot during the first 14 selling days of the month rose 14% from a year ago, [the report] said, "adding pressure to increase incentive programs."
Source:  The Wall Street Journal (Subscription required.)

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Looming Cuts Worry Lincoln Mercury Dealers

DETROIT — Ford Motor Co. is speeding up dealership consolidation, and some Lincoln-Mercury dealers worry that they will bear the brunt of the closures. In meetings beginning this week, Ford executives will brief Lincoln-Mercury dealers on the revised plan. The first meeting is ... Wednesday, Aug. 27. Three more will follow the week of Labor Day. The automaker already has trimmed at least 400 dealerships in the past two years. Much of the reduction has been achieved by joining stand-alone Lincoln-Mercury stores and Ford stores.
Source:  Automotive News (Subscription required.)

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Advocates Push Auto Fleets Toward Propane

NEW YORK -- It already heats your home and grills your steak, and if Brian Feehan and others have their way, it could soon power your child's school bus. Maybe even your truck, too. Feehan, vice president of the Washington-based Propane Education and Research Council, said his group is working with engine makers, automakers and others to get 10 percent of select auto fleets running on propane by 2017. That, he estimated, would save more than a billion gallons of gasoline per year. There are already 11 million propane-powered vehicles operating in the world today, Feehan said, making it "the leader in alternative fuel."
Source:  The Detroit News

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Opinion: It's Show and Tell for Auto Industry in Washington

As the recent Washington debate over fuel economy standards showed, the auto industry has little clout left in the nation's capital. And as Mary Ann Wright of JCI-Saft affirmed this month at the Management Briefing Seminars in Traverse City, Mich., most players in the political arena are largely ignorant of the issues that face the auto industry. The industry must work harder at government relations. But it can best inform policymakers and regulators by taking a leadership role in dealing with environmental and safety issues, not by trying to lobby delegates at the Democratic and Republican national conventions. Automakers, suppliers and dealers must begin the long, slow, hard slog of explaining the state of the industry to policymakers by their actions, not just their words.
Source:  Automotive News (Subscription required.)

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NADA Update
Sign Up Today to Become a Green Checkup Dealer

NADA is urging its members to offer free Green Checkups at their dealerships during the month of September. The Green Checkup focuses on the things that have the greatest effect on fuel economy, such as oil and air filters, engine performance, tire pressure and emission controls. Participating dealers can refer to the Green Checkup Guidelines, which provide the estimated tech hours to perform a Green Checkup.

Already, more than 160 dealers in 36 states have signed up to become Green Checkup Dealers. (Click here to sign up to become a Green Checkup Dealer.) Dealers may decide to provide the Green Checkup along with inspections of child passenger safety seats that are also offered at many dealerships in September. “While customers wait in line to have their child safety seats inspected, we will offer them the option of having the Green Checkup,” says Annette Sykora, NADA chairman.

Although NADA is promoting Green Checkup Month in September, the program is designed for dealers to offer checkups as part of their routine service year-round.

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 is designed to highlight how easy it is to be green. It includes tips on hosting green driving events, participating in the Green Checkup program and case studies that offer “greenprints” for success.

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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
 
"Our auto companies are rising to the challenge building the next generation of American cars but are doing so in times when credit conditions cripple the funding for the facilities and technologies to take the steps to the future."

    -- Presidential candidate John McCain, in support of some government-backed loans for the auto industry, Detroit Free Press, August 23
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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