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Thursday, Dec. 29, 2011 FacebookTwitterFlickrRSSSEND TO A FRIENDPRINT
  
Inside this issue
2012 Auto Preview: New Car Bonanza
Toyota Edges Toward Cooperation
Dodge Caliber, Dodge Nitro, Ford Ranger Officially Dead
Prospects Dim for Small Indian Pickup in the U.S.
Opinion: Saab May Never Build Another Car, But Name Will Live On
Click here for more auto industry news at NADAFrontPage.com. .
Top Stories
2012 Auto Preview: New Car Bonanza

Manufacturers around the world have learned that gaining -- or even holding -- market share is largely dependent on how often they turn over their fleets, and they have taken the lesson to heart. According to John Murphy of Bank of America Merrill Lynch, author of the widely followed annual "Car Wars" study, the industry replaced 16% of its fleets annually between 1991-2011. But the replacement rate jumps to 23% for the 2012 model year, which began Oct. 1, and then surges to an extraordinary 32% for the following year. While customers got to choose among an average of 38 new models every year for the past two decades, they will see some 46 new offerings coming their way every year for the next four.
Source: Fortune

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Toyota Edges Toward Cooperation

Toyota Motor Corp. has a tradition of self-reliance. Chief Executive Officer Akio Toyoda is beginning to change that. Toyoda agreed this month to equip some Toyota cars with [BMW] AG diesel engines, building on an earlier deal to use Tesla Motors Inc. battery packs in future electric vehicles. Before the grandson of the founder became president, Toyota had not purchased such core technologies from other carmakers, said Shiori Hashimoto, a spokeswoman at the Toyota City-based carmaker. The alliances illustrate how Toyoda is shaking up decades-old practices at Japan's largest manufacturer, which is poised to cede its three-year lead in the global automotive industry to General Motors Co.
Source: Bloomberg

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Dodge Caliber, Dodge Nitro, Ford Ranger Officially Dead

The oft-forgotten Dodge Caliber and Dodge Nitro are officially dead; both vehicles ceased production this month. The old, but still popular, Ford Ranger compact pickup has also ended production, according to PickupTrucks.com. The 2012 Caliber officially kicked the bucket this past Friday. The Caliber ... will be replaced by the 2013 Dodge Dart. The 2011 Nitro ends its life with fairly steady sales. The Ranger, which was produced from 1983-2011 with more than 7 million sold, is a far greater loss to the automotive landscape than the two Dodges. While the Ranger will be replaced with a new model in some parts of the world, the U.S. market will stick with the more fuel-efficient Ford F-150.
Source: Cars.com

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Prospects Dim for Small Indian Pickup in the U.S.

Prospects that an Indian automaker was close to bringing a little excitement to the small pickup market in the U.S. are dimming. Indian maker Mahindra & Mahindra issued a statement to reject a report that it might build its trucks in Alabama with the help of truck maker Navistar, the Detroit Bureau reports. At one point, it looked like Mahindra might be only months away from selling its pickups in the U.S. It already sells farm tractors here. But it can't quite seem to figure out how to get the distribution or regulatory approvals.
Source: USA Today

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Opinion: Saab May Never Build Another Car, But Name Will Live On
By Mark Phelan

Saab engineering and technology may live on after the Swedish automaker's bankruptcy, but we may never see the brand's name on another car. Automakers from developing countries may bid on the new Phoenix small-car architecture Saab developed. Phoenix could help a young automaker become competitive with global companies sooner. Saab owns the intellectual property in Phoenix, which was to be the basis for a new 9-3 that Saab hoped to sell within a year or so.
Source: USA Today/Detroit Free Press

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The NADA Story

The NADA story began in 1917 when 30 auto dealers traveled to the nation’s capital to convince Congress not to impose a luxury tax on the automobile. They successfully argued that the automobile is a necessity of American life, not a luxury. From that experience was born the National Automobile Dealers Association. Today, NADA represents nearly 16,000 new-car and -truck dealerships with 32,500 franchises, both domestic and international.

 
Quotable

"If Toyota doesn't reach out to other companies for help in technology, they won't be able to sustain market share."

    -- Mitsushige Akino, an executive at Ichiyoshi Investment Management Co. in Tokyo, referring to the automaker's recent alliances with BMW and Tesla Motors, Bloomberg, Dec. 29
  




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