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Top 5 Stories
Dealers Fear Used-Car Bubble
Incentives on Autos Wither as Demand Rises, Supply Falls
Chrysler Expects Summer to Sizzle Because of New Products
As Car Sales Recover, Dealers Begin to Hire Salespeople
Dealers of Distinction: Georgia Auto Dealer Honors Family Legacy Through Ambassadors' Program
Top 5 Stories
Dealers Fear Used-Car Bubble

Auction prices soar, but some say retail demand isn't on same pace

Already high used-vehicle prices are surging at auctions as dealers anticipate gaps in new-car inventories and snatch up used vehicles to fill their lots. Fears of impending new-vehicle shortages as a result of the March 11 earthquake have pushed up used-vehicle prices. In recent weeks those fears have created a buying frenzy, especially for late-model, fuel-efficient vehicles. Michelle Primm, managing partner at Cascade Auto Group, which sells Audi, Mazda, Porsche and Subaru vehicles in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, typically buys the used vehicles she needs through auctions run by the manufacturers of her brands. But even those prices have "overheated," she says. In an effort to find used vehicles with lower prices she has expanded her search to include local classified ads for private sellers and vehicles that have been repossessed. But for now, wholesale used-vehicle prices continue to surge. In its June 1 edition, NADA Used Car Guide raises its suggested prices of used small vehicles by about 10 percent from May levels. And some nameplates will jump even more. Typically, used-vehicle prices peak in March and decline from April through June, says Jonathan Banks, NADA Used Car Guide senior director of editorial and data services.
Source: Automotive News

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Incentives on Autos Wither as Demand Rises, Supply Falls

Summer car shoppers on the hunt for big discounts and ample selection may be disappointed this year. Vehicle inventories are tight, especially for hot-selling fuel-efficient models, and prices are climbing. Two main reasons: volatility in gas prices and continuing fallout from the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan, which has forced some automakers to cut production. Discounts and sales incentives last month were at their lowest in the United States in more than five years — about $2,320 per vehicle, a $370 reduction over April 2010, according to analyst reports. South Korean automakers Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Motors Corp. are having trouble keeping cars in stock, due to the run-up in gas prices and high demand for their vehicles, said Doug Fox, owner of Ann Arbor Automotive, a dealer of Hyundai, Acura, Nissan and other foreign brands. For bargain-hunters, dealers are offering cash rebates and low-interest financing. But they're generally on fewer models, and less sought after ones. "We still feel we need to be aggressive in the marketplace," said Richard Genthe, owner of Dick Genthe Chevrolet in Southgate.
Source: The Detroit News

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Chrysler Expects Summer to Sizzle Because of New Products

Chrysler sales are down 9% through April, but dealers aren't the least bit concerned. In their eyes, the brand hasn't been this hot in years, thanks to clever marketing and a refreshed lineup, and they expect the summer to be strong -- especially with the redesigned Chrysler 300 starting to arrive in greater numbers and the Chrysler 200 convertible out just in time for warmer weather. Through April, the Chrysler brand has been the underperformer in the Auburn Hills automaker's portfolio. Sales shot up 21% and 36%, respectively, for Dodge and Ram during that period. They skyrocketed 41% for Jeep, thanks to a new Grand Cherokee. "In the Texas market, sales are up, and we are doing well with the Chrysler brand, said Alfred Flores, owner of Spring Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram in Houston, and chairman of Chrysler's National Dealer Council. "We've seen a huge increase in traffic as well as customer buying."
Source: Detroit Free Press

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As Car Sales Recover, Dealers Begin to Hire Salespeople

Hank Graff Chevrolet in Davison made no new hires in 2009. Last year, the store hired one person. But so far this year, Hank Graff has hired six staff members -- three in sales, two in service and one to take photos of cars for the store's Web site. The store is one of several in southeast Michigan that view recovering new-car sales as a reason to add employees, loosening a job market that essentially froze after the late-2008 economic crash and the General Motors and Chrysler dealership closings that followed. U.S. demand for new cars and trucks hit a quarter-century low in 2009, and sales crept up slowly last year -- enough that the average Michigan dealership staff grew by one person, said Paul Taylor, chief economist for the National Automobile Dealers Association. This year, analysts predict light-vehicle sales could match 2008's total. More sales mean dealers need more employees.
Source: Detroit Free Press

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Dealers of Distinction: Georgia Auto Dealer Honors Family Legacy Through Ambassadors' Program

McLEAN, Va. – For Georgia dealer Jim Otwell, supporting the Ambassadors' program of the National Automobile Dealers Charitable Foundation means more than just giving back to his community. It’s also a way to honor his parents and the legacy they left as the founders of his family’s 63-year-old dealership.
Source: NADAFrontPage.com

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Dealer Executive Education at Babson College August 2011 Class Forming Now
Babson College has the nation's No. 1 ranked MBA program for entrepreneurship, a distinction it has earned for 17 consecutive years.

May Discounts From Lenovo
NADA members can use eCoupon USXMAYSAVINGS2011 at checkout to get an additional 8% off IdeaPad Y Series and an additional 10% off IdeaCentre All in One Desktops.

HP's Inventory Blowout
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NADAFrontPage.com
For comprehensive auto industry news, visit the online news magazine NADAFrontPage.com.
Quotable
"We ran out of Priuses over a month ago. This month we'll be lucky to get 10 or 12."

    -- Earl Stewart, a Toyota dealer in North Palm Beach, Fla., who says he sold 88 new Priuses in March and 24 last month, USA Today, May 15

Video Highlights
 
GM Sales Chief Discusses Progress, Challenges Ahead (AutoFocus) 

 
2011 NADA-IHS Auto Forum Offers Insiders' View of Present, Future (NADA-TV)

 
Analyst Says Gas Prices Affecting Small, Midsize Used Markets (AutoFocus)


NAD Charitable Foundation Supports Wounded Veterans Initiative (NADA-TV)

Tornado Relief


Upcoming Webinar

Wednesday, May 18, at 1 p.m. (Eastern): “One-Price Selling: In Sync with Today’s Auto Purchasers,” presented by Mark Rikess, CEO of The Rikess Group


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