For optimal viewing through your web browser or PDA, click here.

SPONSORED BY
 
NADA.org
Thursday, Sept. 4, 2008 RSSSEND TO A FRIENDPRINT
Home | AdvocacyAffiliates | Convention | Jobs | Programs | Publications | Training | Services
At a Glance...
Top Stories
NADA Convention: 'Full Speed Ahead' to New Orleans in January
Nissan's Boost in Sales Follows Incentives Hike
Auto Sales Tumble, But Industry Sees Signs of Hope
Drivers Renew Their Love of Trucks
GM Sees Hummer Sale by Early '09, Tough Times Ahead
Chrysler Banks on Vehicles' Quality
GMAC to Cut 5,000 Jobs, Close All 200 Retail Offices
York: Detroit 3 Must Get 'Green' and Flexible
Opinion: The Road to a Bailout They Don't Deserve
NADA Update
Sign Up Today to Become a Green Checkup Dealer
NADA Virtual Seminar Archives Now Available
Committed to Community: NADA Hole-in-One Insurance to Host Charity Golf Tournament in New Orleans
Did You Miss the First Virtual Seminar on the Red Flags Rule?
Taxpayers with 25 or More Heavy Vehicles Must File Excise Tax Forms Electronically
STAR Answers Dealers Questions about Dealership Data Security
Save up to 42% on Select ThinkPad Notebooks
Top Stories
NADA Convention: 'Full Speed Ahead' to New Orleans in January

NEW ORLEANS – New Orleans city officials say that damage caused by Hurricane Gustav this week is “minor and easily repairable.” A statement issued by the New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) reported little to no disruption in meetings, conventions and special events scheduled over the next two weeks. The Convention Center, Superdome and major hotels suffered only minor damage such as window breaks. All repairs are expected to be made in the next few hours to few days. There is no mid-range or long-term impact of any kind, the CVB reported.

The New Orleans Saints will open their National Football League season on Sunday as scheduled in the New Orleans Superdome. The New Orleans International Airport is now operational and more routine airline traffic is expected to resume today.

"We’re pleased to hear that the city of New Orleans and the surrounding areas are making such progress,” says Steve Pitt, NADA vice president of conventions and expositions. "Residents and workers from across the region already have begun returning to their homes and businesses. And for us, it’s full speed ahead for the NADA convention’s return to New Orleans in January.”

The NADA convention will return to New Orleans in about five months. The convention dates are Jan. 24-27. Registration is open. Several hotels already have sold out. 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 scheduled. Since Katrina, more than $1 billion has been spent on hotel renovations and 913 restaurants are open.

[back to top]

Nissan's Boost in Sales Follows Incentives Hike

Nissan Motor Co. in August posted the largest incentive boost of the six biggest vehicle sellers in the United States, according to Autodata Corp. estimates. That analysis helps explain why it was the only one of those companies to post a gain in sales last month. Nissan raised its incentives by $603, or 23.9%, to an average of $3,124 per vehicle in August, the same month that the automaker's sales rose 13.6%. The industry average for incentives rose by $190, or 7.2%, to $2,838 per vehicle. Nissan's incentives led those of other Asian automakers, but were lower than those of the Detroit Three.
Source:  Detroit Free Press

[back to top]

Auto Sales Tumble, But Industry Sees Signs of Hope

DETROIT -- Auto makers reported another big drop in U.S. vehicle sales for August, but an easing in gasoline prices and emerging signs of improvement in the economy have boosted the industry's hopes that it is near the bottom of its downturn. Sales of cars and light trucks fell 15.5% to 1.25 million last month, down from 1.48 million a year earlier, according to Autodata Corp. The closely watched seasonally adjusted annualized selling rate was 13.7 million vehicles, up from 12.55 million in July, but down from 16.3 million in August 2007, Autodata said. "There are early indications of somewhat improving conditions," said Ford Motor Co. economist Ellen Hughes-Cromwick, in a conference call with analysts and reporters. In a separate conference call, General Motors Corp. executives said they are seeing signs that the industry is "at or near the bottom." The consumer "is feeling better," said Michael DiGiovanni, GM's top sales analyst. Despite the industry's hopes the market won't get much worse, auto executives warned it may still take months, or even a few quarters, before signs of a recovery emerge. GM's sales fell 20.3% to 307,285 cars and light trucks, though August was its best month of the year in terms of market share... Toyota sales dropped 9.4% to 211,533 vehicles, and Honda's fell 7.3% to 146,855 vehicles. Chrysler LLC turned in the worst showing, with its vehicle sales falling 34.5% to 110,235. The decline puts Chrysler, once the nation's No. 3 auto maker, in danger of slipping to No. 6, behind Nissan Motor Co. ...Nissan's sale rose 13.6% to 108,493 vehicles.
Source:  The Wall Street Journal (Subscription required.)

[back to top]

Drivers Renew Their Love of Trucks

Trucks of all types accounted for 49.7% of total new-vehicle sales, their biggest share since 49.9% in March. Meanwhile, after several months of gains, small-car sales were 2.6% worse than August 2007. They were pieces of a smaller pie: 15.5% fewer new cars and trucks were sold in August than a year ago, says tracker Autodata. I like to believe that we probably saw the bottom of the overall market in June and July," says Mark LaNeve, GM vice president of North American sales. "I'm not looking for a very dramatic rebound, but hopefully we saw the bottom, and we're going to start scratching our way up."
Source:  USA TODAY

[back to top]

GM Sees Hummer Sale by Early '09, Tough Times Ahead

NEW DELHI -- General Motors expects to sell its Hummer brand by the end of this year or early in 2009, as it shores up capital to survive a deep industry slump amid record losses, its chief operating officer [Fritz Henderson] said. "We are trying to approach this (Hummer sale) on an urgent basis," he said. "End of this year is a fair amount of time. It can conceivably happen ... but if it takes us to early next year, that is okay, too," Henderson told reporters. "We are working quickly. It will be premature to mention something," Henderson said on Wednesday, adding that "several" suitors had approached GM. But he declined to name any.
Source:  Reuters

[back to top]

Chrysler Banks on Vehicles' Quality

Chrysler LLC is so confident in the quality of its new vehicles that it has set aside less money to pay for future warranty repairs, a top executive tells the Free Press. Internal numbers at the Auburn Hills automaker show a 29% decrease in the rate of warranty claims in new vehicles since February -- when a new quality program was instituted -- compared with a year ago. This allows the company to save "hundreds of millions of dollars" in money reserved to pay for problems, said Doug Betts, Chrysler's chief customer officer. The new system allows for the automaker to more quickly address problems, he said. "We're finding that not only are we solving the problems faster, but the solutions are more likely to hit the mark. There's a higher percent of actually solving the problem," Betts said.
Source:  Detroit Free Press

[back to top]

GMAC to Cut 5,000 Jobs, Close All 200 Retail Offices

WASHINGTON -- GMAC Financial Services said it was cutting 5,000 jobs at its ResCap mortgage lending subsidiary, or 60 percent of the staff, and closing all 200 GMAC Mortgage retail offices -- the latest sign of continuing woes in the housing sector. "While these actions are extremely difficult, they are necessary to position ResCap to withstand this challenging environment," ResCap chairman and CEO Tom Marano said in a statement. "Conditions in the mortgage and credit markets have not abated and, therefore, we need to respond aggressively by further reducing both operating costs and business risk."
Source:  The Detroit News

[back to top]

York: Detroit 3 Must Get 'Green' and Flexible

NEW YORK -- The only way for the Detroit 3 to regain substantial profitability is to become more “green” and build more flexible factories, says Jerry York, auto industry gadfly. York, 70, is CEO of private investment firm Harwinton Capital LLC. He’s better known as an adviser to billionaire investor Kirk Kerkorian, and as a former CFO of then-Chrysler Corp. “The winners will be those companies that can change their output from larger to smaller and more fuel-efficient vehicles and that can improve their efficiency to make substantial profits on a less-rich mix of products sold,” York said today in a presentation to auto dealers and investors...
Source:  Automotive News (Subscription required.)

[back to top]

Opinion: The Road to a Bailout They Don't Deserve
By Steven Pearlstein

It's desperation time for the Big Three automakers. They are awash in gas-guzzling vehicles nobody wants to buy, bleeding red ink and running out of cash. So it should be no surprise that when Congress returns next week, the companies and their unions will put on a full-court press to win approval for $50 billion in federal loans to be used to re-engineer and retool their plants for a new generation of energy-efficient vehicles. And while the White House has indicated its reluctance to involve the government in the rescue of yet another industry, it may have a hard time explaining why the automakers are any less deserving of a "bailout" than Wall Street investment banks or Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. In fact, it's hard to imagine an industry less deserving of government help. And yet it is probably the wise thing to do. 
Source: The Washington Post

[back to top]

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, dealers in 43 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.

[back to top]

NADA Virtual Seminar Archives Now Available

The complete audio and video content of 19 NADA Management Education virtual seminars from the past year is now available. Each seminar archive contains the original presentation from 2007 or 2008, and can be accessed for up to six months. The cost of each seminar is $99.

Archived virtual seminars are available for the following topics:

  • Variable operations
  • Fixed operations
  • F&I
  • Legal issues
  • Business management
  • Trucks

For a complete list of archived seminars or to place your order, visit www.nada.org/seminars or call (800) 252-6232, Ext. 2.

[back to top]

Committed to Community: NADA Hole-in-One Insurance to Host Charity Golf Tournament in New Orleans

NADA Insurance announced that its hole-in-one insurance program, ACECO, will host a charitable golf tournament in conjunction with the 2009 NADA Convention & Exposition in New Orleans next January. The inaugural “Dealers for Charity Golf Tournament” is slated for Friday, Jan. 23 at TPC Louisiana, the only PGA TOUR golf course in the state. The challenging 7,300-yard, par-72 Pete Dye-designed course is set among bayous and old-growth cypress trees. Built in 2004, it is home to the prestigious PGA TOUR Zurich Classic of New Orleans. All proceeds from the tournament will benefit the Brees Dream Foundation, a charitable organization founded by New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees and his wife Brittany.
 
"NADA's convention theme is 'Committed to Community,' so it's fitting that we're raising money for a New Orleans-based organization," says Lin Peacock, vice president of NADA Insurance. "Our members have a long history of supporting charitable events within their own communities." The National Automobile Dealers Charitable Foundation donated $400,000 in May to restore the athletic fields at Lusher Charter School, located in the heart of Uptown New Orleans.

If you're interested in a sponsorship, contact tournament director Alicia Rodriguez at (888) 828-8540 for details. The tournament is open to NADA members only. Fees for the 144-person tournament are $300 per person or $1,200 per foursome. Online registration opens on Tuesday, Sept. 2 at www.ACECOinsurance.com.

[back to top]

Did You Miss the First Virtual Seminar on the Red Flags Rule?

If you weren’t among the 500 individuals and several dealer association groups who logged on this past week for our first virtual seminar on complying with the new FTC Red Flags Rule, you have another chance: The seminar will be repeated on Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2008 from 1-3 p.m. EST.

Like the first one, the seminar will be presented live and online, inviting participation by attendees. Questions are encouraged, which will be answered by presenters, Bert Rasmussen, author of A Dealer Guide to the FTC Red Flags and Address Discrepancy Rules: Protecting Against Identity Theft, and Paul Metrey, NADA director of regulatory affairs. The seminar will address what you need to do by Nov. 1, 2008 to comply with the Red Flags Rule, such as:

  • Preliminary risk assessment
  • Construction of a written Identity Theft Prevention Program
  • Knowing the indicators of identity theft (Red Flags) and how to detect and respond to them
  • Training requirements
  • Service provider oversight
  • Involvement of a dealership’s board of directors

Dealers, general managers, CFOs, controllers, finance managers, sales managers, IT managers and outside compliance professionals are encouraged to participate. The fee is $199 per computer connection.

To register online, visit www.nada.org/seminars or call (800) 248-6232, Ext. 7061. To order A Dealer Guide to the FTC Red Flags and Address Discrepancy Rules: Protecting Against Identity Theft, visit www.nada.org/RedFlags.

[back to top]

Taxpayers with 25 or More Heavy Vehicles Must File Excise Tax Forms Electronically

WASHINGTON — Individuals and organizations with 25 or more trucks, tractors or other heavy vehicles used on highways now are required to make their excise tax filings with the Internal Revenue Service electronically, rather than by paper. Form 2290, Heavy Highway Vehicle Use Tax Return, is used to report and pay highway-use excise taxes. E-filing of Form 2290 began in August 2007. Electronic filing streamlines the processing of the Form 2290. It is safer and more reliable than paper filing and reduces preparation and processing errors. Another advantage of e-filing Form 2290 is that taxpayers don’t have to wait for a stamped version of the Schedule 1, Schedule of Heavy Highway Vehicles, to be returned by mail because they will almost instantly receive the equivalent of a stamped version electronically. For additional information, contact NADA/ATD Regulatory Affairs at regulatory@nada.org. Click here for the complete press release.
Source:  IRS

[back to top]

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 find out "How Often Should a Dealership Back Up Data?" click here.

[back to top]

Save up to 42% on Select ThinkPad Notebooks

  

NADA members can save three ways:

  • Instant savings with discounted Web pricing;
  • Save even more with your NADA discount; and
  • Enter eCoupon USXLABORDAY at checkout.

Visit www.nada.org/Technology/PCpurchaseprogram (member log-in required), then click www.lenovo.com/shop/deals/nada or call (800) 426-7235, Option 1, Ext. 4838 to take advantage of these savings. Enter eCoupon USXLABORDAY at checkout. Free ground shipping is available on all Web orders.

[back to top]

 
Featured Video
 
 
NADA-TV Reports on the Launch of the 'Green Checkup' Campaign. Pictured above is NADA Chairman Annette Sykora with Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter at a news conference in Denver.


More Video Highlights

Quotable
 
"We're pleased to hear that the city of New Orleans and the surrounding areas are making such progress. Residents and workers ... already have begun returning to their homes and businesses. And for us, it's full speed ahead for the NADA convention's return to New Orleans in January."

   
-- Steve Pitt, NADA vice president of conventions and expositions, NADA Headlines, Sept. 4


"There are early indications of somewhat improving conditions."

    -- Ford Motor Co. economist Ellen Hughes-Cromwick, referring to U.S. auto sales, The Wall Street Journal, Sept. 4


"I like to believe that we probably saw the bottom of the overall market in June and July. I'm not looking for a very dramatic rebound, but hopefully we saw the bottom, and we're going to start scratching our way up."

    -- Mark LaNeve, GM vice president of North American sales, USA TODAY, Sept. 4


"The winners will be those companies that can change their output from larger to smaller and more fuel-efficient vehicles and that can improve their efficiency to make substantial profits on a less-rich mix of products sold."

   
-- Jerry York, CEO of private investment firm Harwinton Capital LLC, Kerkorian advisor and a former CFO of Chrysler, urging the Detroit 3 to become "green" and flexible, Automotive News, Sept. 4


"We are trying to approach this (Hummer sale) on an urgent basis." 

    -- Fritz Henderson, General Motors' chief operating officer, told reporters the company expects to sell its Hummer brand by the end of this year or early in 2009, Reuters, Sept. 3
Video Highlights
 
 
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.


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.

 
Search Back Issues | Unsubscribe/Manage your subscription | email us
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.