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Thursday, Sept. 15, 2011 RSSSEND TO A FRIENDPRINT
Inside This Issue
Dealers Oppose Gas Rules
GOP Criticizes Obama Fuel Rules
Ford to Pay Off $1.8-Billion Loan
GM to Revise Its Ads for Chevrolet, Cadillac
Parents Still Struggle With Proper Child-Seat Use, Study Finds
Stabenow Wants U.S. to Stop China from Taking GM, Ford Technology
Fiat Delays Alfa Romeo's Return to the U.S.
IRS Issues Estate Tax Guidance
All-Electric Coda: First Chinese-Made Car Comes to U.S.
Click here for NADA's online newsroom at NADAFrontPage.com. .
Top Stories
Dealers Oppose Gas Rules

The nation's politically influential automobile dealers, emboldened by the Obama administration's recent retreat on tougher smog regulations, are revving up a lobbying effort to block fuel-economy rules proposed by the administration. More than 400 dealers are set to fly to Washington in coming days to press legislation that would block the automobile rules for at least a year. They argue the new rules—which would raise the average fuel economy of new cars and light trucks to 54.5 miles a gallon over the next 14 years—would be too costly and lead to job losses. "It's too much, too soon, too fast," said [Bailey Wood, a lobbyist for the National Automobile Dealers Association.] The auto dealers have twice succeeded in getting congressional Democrats to defy the Obama White House. In late 2009, they successfully pushed legislation to set up an arbitration process to reinstate dealers closed during the bankruptcy reorganizations of General Motors Co. and Chrysler Group LLC. Months later, auto dealers won an exemption from the financial-regulatory overhaul.
Source: The Wall Street Journal

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GOP Criticizes Obama Fuel Rules

Two House Republicans and a former Bush administration regulator criticized the Obama administration's efforts to dramatically boost fuel efficiency standards. At a hearing Wednesday of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, John D. Graham, who headed the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs from 2001 to 2006, said the Obama administration is overstating the benefits of a proposal to hike fuel economy standards to a fleetwide average of 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025. Rep. Mike Kelly, R-Pa., an auto dealer, said the 54.5 mpg requirement will harm "consumer choice" and puts the future of private transportation at risk. "We're picking and choosing what people are allowed to drive and not drive or purchase," Kelly said.
Source: The Detroit News

Editor's note: To read Graham’s testimony before the House committee, click here.

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Ford to Pay Off $1.8-Billion Loan

Ford will pay off the $1.8-billion balance on a loan that was due in 2013, its chief financial officer told investors in Frankfurt, Germany, on Wednesday. "Earlier this week we gave notice to our lenders and by the end of this week we will have pre-paid the remaining amount of our term loan," said Lewis Booth, Ford CFO, speaking at the UBS investor conference at the Frankfurt auto show. "That's a further $1.8 billion of debt we will have paid off. Ford has cut its total debt from $33.6 billion at the end of 2009 to $14 billion as of June 30 this year.
Source: Detroit Free Press

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GM to Revise Its Ads for Chevrolet, Cadillac

General Motors is retooling some of the creative work for Cadillac and Chevrolet ads. A year after Chief Marketing Officer Joel Ewanick joined the company and overhauled its advertising, GM is looking to reinvigorate its "Chevy Runs Deep" ad campaign because some of the creative work has not resonated strongly with consumers and some ads don't explain what the slogan means, Ewanick said. Cadillac is also revamping ads to boost sales. Ewanick's newest changes to Chevy and Cadillac advertising show GM, the largest U.S. automaker, is still trying to find the right formula to rebuild its brands.
Source: Bloomberg

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Parents Still Struggle With Proper Child-Seat Use, Study Finds

With National Child Passenger Safety Week approaching, the nonprofit organization Safe Kids USA released on Thursday new research relating to the use of child safety seats. Car crashes are still the leading cause of death of children between the ages of 3 and 14, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Yet, a number of studies have shown that, when used correctly, child safety seats for babies and young children, as well as booster seats for older children, reduce the risk of injury and death in crashes. The study found that top tethers on forward-facing car seats were being used less than one-third of the time a baby or child was in position. And even those parents who used a top tether strap used it correctly only 59 percent of the time.
Source: The New York Times

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Stabenow Wants U.S. to Stop China from Taking GM, Ford Technology

Sen. Debbie Stabenow urged the Obama administration Wednesday to take steps to prevent the Chinese government from obtaining auto technologies from General Motors Co. and Ford Motor Co. The Lansing Democrat wrote U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk, urging him to oppose Chinese efforts to demand U.S. auto technologies. She cited a news account "that China is attempting to pressure American automakers, including General Motors and Ford, to transfer core technologies of their electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles to Chinese companies, in order for those vehicles to qualify for China's clean energy vehicle incentive program." 
Source: The Detroit News

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Fiat Delays Alfa Romeo's Return to the U.S.

Fiat's sporty Alfa Romeo brand will be reintroduced to the U.S. starting in 2013, not 2012 as planned, the brand's top executive, Harald Wester, told analysts in Frankfurt [Wednesday]. That's bad news for the 100 or so U.S. Fiat dealers who signed up to take that brand because they were promised models from Fiat's Alfa and possibly Lancia brands to fill their showrooms. "The icing on the cake for us as retailers is the Alfa Romeo franchise," is how Fiat dealer Carl Galeana puts it. Economic uncertainty in Europe is prompting Fiat executives to review what products to launch where and when.
Source: USA Today

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IRS Issues Estate Tax Guidance

In late 2010, Congress passed the "Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization and Job Creation Act of 2010," which reinstated the estate tax retroactively to the beginning of 2010. For people who died in 2010, it included a provision that permits their executors to opt out of estate tax and apply the carryover basis rules that applied before the estate tax returned. The IRS recently issued guidance on this procedure, in the form of two publications: Notice 2011-66, which establishes the timing and manner of the election, and Revenue Procedure 2011-41, which provides guidelines on allocating basis increases among assets under the carryover basis rules.
Source: IRS

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All-Electric Coda: First Chinese-Made Car Comes to U.S.

After years of anticipation, the first Chinese-built car is finally being offered for sale in the U.S. But far from being the vanguard of an invasion of cheap Chinese cars that U.S. automakers once feared, the Coda sedan, as the model is being called, is a pricey niche model: a $44,900 all-electric sedan. And it's not entirely Chinese. The battery is made in China by a joint venture of which Los Angeles-based Coda has a 40% stake. The body is made at a contract builder in China. But the car was largely engineered in the U.S., and some of its electronics are American-made. Plus, the battery is attached to the body in Benicia, Calif.
Source: USA Today

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More articles

Sept. 14 - Toyota's North American Production Back at 100%

Sept. 13 - Auto Dealers Step Up F&I Training

Sept. 12 - Marchionne: Chrysler on Track to Post $3B Operating Profit in 2012

Sept. 9 - Buyer Beware: Flooded Cars Flood the Market

Sept. 8 - Auto Dealers Pressured to Spiff Up Showrooms

 
Quotable
"We're picking and choosing what people are allowed to drive and not drive or purchase."

   
-- Rep. Mike Kelly, R-Pa., an auto dealer who says the 54.5 mpg fuel economy requirement will harm "consumer choice" and puts the future of private transportation at risk, The Detroit News, Sept. 15
Videos

 
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NADA U Webinars
-- Sept. 21 at 1 p.m., EDT: “Implementing the Four Essentials to 100% Absorption,” presented by Don Reed, NADA U Partner and CEO, DealerPro Training Solutions

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Convention News
Alert: Beware of Hotel Offers from Unaffiliated Third Parties

Some dealers and exhibitors may receive emails from unaffiliated hotels or third-party agencies offering to make hotel reservations for the 2012 NADA/ATD Convention & Expo in Las Vegas, Feb. 3-6. These entities HAVE NO AFFILIATION WITH NADA. They may employ harsh cancellation or alteration policies, charge excessive fees or engage in other questionable practices. Official housing for the 2012 convention is available online only through the convention's website. Following the completion of your hotel reservation, you will receive a confirmation email from NADA (nada@experient-inc.com.)

Foundation News
NADA Foundation: Michigan Auto Dealer Supports Reading Program

NADA Foundation Program Reaches 500th Ambassador

Marketplace
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HP's Small but Mighty PC

Save More Than 50% on Lenovo in September

   
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