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Inside this issue
Expensive Fuel Economy Proposal Will Price More Than 7 Million Consumers Out of the New-car Market, NADA Says
IRS Issues Regulations Regarding Tax Treatment of 'Image Upgrades' and Other Property Improvement Costs
Chrysler Plans New 200, Dodge Avenger, Jeep Compass
Ford Expects Fusion to Grab Profits, Not Sales Crown
Audi's Future Vision: Self-Driving Cars
Click here for more auto industry news at NADAFrontPage.com. .
Top Stories
Expensive Fuel Economy Proposal Will Price More Than 7 Million Consumers Out of the New-car Market, NADA Says

NADA said today that more than 7 million Americans would no longer be able to afford to buy a new car or truck in 2025 if the most expensive fuel economy rule ever proposed goes into effect. The comments were made by NADA director Forrest McConnell in testimony today at the final hearing on proposed fuel economy rules held by the EPA and the NHTSA in San Francisco. McConnell’s testimony stressed the importance of credit availability to auto sales, noting that with most consumers, if they don’t qualify for an auto loan, they can’t buy the vehicle. However, because he is unaware of any lender who will “fund an auto loan based on promises of fuel savings,” McConnell expressed concern that the proposal’s vehicle cost increases would significantly dampen sales. And, McConnell warned, “if new vehicles don’t get sold, their fuel saving or environmental benefits won’t materialize.” Click here for NADA's full testimony.
Source: NADA Newsroom

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IRS Issues Regulations Regarding Tax Treatment of 'Image Upgrades' and Other Property Improvement Costs

The IRS recently issued regulations providing guidance for determining whether expenditures that dealers make to their facilities are repairs, (which could be currently expensed) or capitalized improvements (which must be depreciated) for tax purposes. For dealerships, the regulations are most relevant in determining the proper treatment of costs incurred for image upgrades required by the auto manufacturers, including showroom, customer waiting area, and exterior facade updates, but large repair expenditures such as major roof repairs may also be affected. Click here for a summary of the new regulations prepared by the Crowe Horwath accounting firm for NADA members.
Source: NADA Regulatory Affairs

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Chrysler Plans New 200, Dodge Avenger, Jeep Compass

Chrysler is going to introduce new midsize sedans to replace the Chrysler 200 and Dodge Avenger and new versions of the Compass and Liberty for 2013. They'll be based on the platform that underpins the Dart and built in Toledo. "It's gonna be a trail-rated, full-blooded Jeep that has its origins in the architecture of a sports car," Chrysler and Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne said in an interview. Chrysler is also considering a compact hatchback -- Marchionne calls it the "Chrysler 100." If that car gets the green light, Chrysler will also export it as a Lancia, Fiat's European luxury brand.
Source: USA Today

Editor's note: Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne will address dealers on Feb. 4 at the 2012 NADA-ATD Convention & Expo in Las Vegas. Click here for more information.

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Ford Expects Fusion to Grab Profits, Not Sales Crown

Ford Motor Co. Chief Executive Officer Alan Mulally has suggested that his stylish new Fusion sedan is seeking sales supremacy over Toyota Motor Corp.'s Camry. That’s not exactly what the boss wants, executives said. Instead, with Fusion, Mulally is aiming for a balance between commanding top dollar for each car and selling a lot more of them. “Between price and volume, we’ll sort out the right mix,” Jim Farley, Ford’s global marketing chief, said in an interview. “I don’t think we’re very enamored with being No. 1 just to be No. 1. We’re much more enamored with getting the right price point and the right kind of people to buy the car.”
Source: Bloomberg

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Audi's Future Vision: Self-Driving Cars

The car of the future seems best suited for people who don’t like driving. From the annual Digital Life Design conference in Munich, Audi AG Chairman Rupert Stadler described the future car as one that drives itself and parks itself, though unfortunately it doesn’t wash itself. Perhaps sensing some Audi fans in the audience, who like the feeling of driving 200 kilometers an hour on the autobahn, he was quick to say that the autopilot feature on a car will be completely voluntary. “We promise to support you as the driver and not tell you what to do,” he said on stage at the conference.
Source: The Wall Street Journal

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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

"How is a rule that eliminates the most affordable new cars on the market pro-consumer?"

    -- NADA director Forrest McConnell, in testimony today at an EPA/NHTSA hearing, referring to an Energy Information Administration report that found if the proposed fuel economy rule takes effect, cars under $15,000 will no longer be available in 2025, NADA Newsroom, Jan. 24 
    




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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 publicaffairs@nada.org .