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Top 5 Stories
Industry Tells House Subpanel that EPA Regulations Are Bad for Business
US Auto Sales Jump 27 Percent in February
GM, Toyota Stand Out as Auto Sales Sizzle
Coda Aims to Sell 50,000 Electric Cars by 2015
Opinion: A Jolt We Can Live With
For more auto industry news, visit NADAFrontPage.com
Top 5 Stories
Industry Tells House Subpanel that EPA Regulations Are Bad for Business

Alabama dealer and NADA board member Forrest McConnell testifies before a U.S. House Energy and Commerce subcommittee Tuesday on the need for a single, national fuel economy standard that takes into account national factors, such as jobs, safety and consumer demand. (Click the image to watch a video of McConnell's testimony.)

U.S. EPA's current and future plans to regulate greenhouse gas emissions will compromise the manufacturing sector's ability to recover from the economic downturn of the last few years, industry representatives told a key House subcommittee (Tuesday.) The House Energy and Power Subcommittee will be the first panel to vote on a bill that would strip EPA's authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from power plants, factories and other sources, and Chairman Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.) has said he hopes to mark it up as soon as possible. Forrest McConnell, speaking on behalf of the National Automobile Dealers Association, told the committee that making the U.S. Department of Transportation responsible for a single national fuel economy standard would "always, by definition, be more uniform, consistent and harmonized." While the administration's tailpipe emissions rule has guaranteed that automakers and dealers have only one standard to deal with through at least 2016, McConnell said, the next rules "are literally being drafted now in Sacramento and Washington." The next round of fuel economy standards is due out later this year, but McConnell said it was unnecessary for EPA to participate in it or for states to craft separate rules. "It is now incumbent on Congress to impose order on these conflicting regulations and have the final say on policy," he said.
Source: E&E Publishing (subscription required)

News release on McConnell testimony
 Video: McConnell calls for single, national fuel economy standard

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US Auto Sales Jump 27 Percent in February

DETROIT -- As more U.S. buyers head back into auto dealerships, automakers are jostling for their attention with sweetened deals. The major automakers knocked a little extra off sticker prices in February, giving additional momentum to a recovery in sales that started last year. All the major car companies reported double-digit gains for last month. At AutoNation Inc., the country's largest dealership chain, customers are increasingly considering fuel prices when they decide what model to buy. But there are other factors, said President and Chief Operating Officer Mike Maroone. The company sees the "freak-out point" that changes people's car-buying behavior at $4.25 to $4.50 per gallon, he said. "We're still a long ways from that," he said.
Source: The Associated Press

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GM, Toyota Stand Out as Auto Sales Sizzle

General Motors Co., Toyota Motor Corp. and Nissan Motor Co. each reported substantial jumps in U.S. sales of cars and light trucks in February, powering the industry to its strongest pace in nearly 18 months. All three relied heavily on incentives to lure buyers, and GM and Toyota's gains were magnified because each had unusually weak sales a year ago. Still, auto makers expressed confidence that more consumers are willing to spend on new cars, and lenders are making loans and leases more readily available, even to customers with blemishes on their credit records. When sales slumped during the recession, Galpin Motors near Los Angeles had too much inventory on its sprawling lot, said Vice President Beau Boeckmann. "Now we have the opposite problem," he said. The Ford dealership last month sold about 500 vehicles, up from 300 a year ago. "I feel good going into March," Mr Boeckmann added.
Source: The Wall Street Journal

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Coda Aims to Sell 50,000 Electric Cars by 2015

Electric car start-up Coda Automotive aims to sell 50,000 vehicles by 2015, mostly in the United States, chief executive Phil Murtaugh told reporters on Wednesday. Coda is making its first vehicle, the CODA EV, in China in partnership with Hafei, which is controlled by state-owned China Changan Auto, and is scheduled to begin selling it in the United States in the second half of this year. It will be sold to fleet buyers in California initially and slowly expand into other states, Murtaugh told reporters in Beijing. "Once we start selling to fleets and get a feel of how we are doing, we will start selling to consumers. Our plan is to go slowly," he said.
Source: Reuters

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Opinion: A Jolt We Can Live With

What a pleasant surprise February auto sales turned out to be. Most analysts expected another 12-million-plus month, the fifth straight. The bets were also on the SAAR sagging a bit from the 12.6 million rate of January and December. Boom. February landed with a 13.4 million SAAR.
Source: Automotive News

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For more auto industry news, visit NADAFrontPage.com

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Quotable
 
"I feel good going into March."

    -- Beau Boeckmann, vice president of Galpin Motors, which sold about 500 vehicles last month, up from 300 a year ago, The Wall Street Journal, March 2

Video Highlights
 
 
Lentz to Dealers: Pay Attention to Women, Hispanics (NADA-TV)

 
Fiat's Laura Soave Speaks at Women Dealers' Breakfast (NADA-TV)

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Scam Alert: Bogus Website and Fake Survey Have No Connection to NADA

Dealers and others are still receiving e-mail messages from “NADA Dealer Services,”
(nadanews@nadadealerservices
.com
) which refers to an “AdTrack” survey described as an “NADA program” that rates automotive direct mail companies. NADA did not conduct such a survey. NADA does not have an “AdTrack” program. The e-mail, Web site and survey HAVE NO CONNECTION WITH NADA. NADA’s legal affairs department is taking action to stop these misrepresentations.

GM's Dan Akerson to Keynote NADA/IHS Automotive Forum 2011
Register today for the second annual NADA/IHS Automotive Forum in New York City on April 19, 2011 hosted by the New York International Auto Show.

Your PC - Your Way from HP
Use eCoupon HPyNY11 at checkout to get 15 percent off the 6000, 6000 All-in-One, 6005 or Elite 8000 series.

NADA University Launches Three New Online Courses
New offerings posted to the NADA University Learning Hub include courses in the legal and parts categories.

Enroll Now for Spring Dealer Academy 2011 Classes
Spring 2011 classes include ATD Truck Dealer Academy, Dealer Candidate Academy and General Dealership Management Academy

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