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Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2012 FacebookTwitterFlickrRSSSEND TO A FRIENDPRINT
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Inside this issue
Auto Sales Per U.S. Dealership May Rise to Record in 2012
Electric Vehicle Tax Credit May Rise
Lower Prices, Higher Incomes Boost Auto Sales
Nebraska's Loy Todd Elected Chairman of the Automotive Trade Association Executives
Penske's Earnings Gain 65%
Auto Show Concept Cars Go from Wild to Mild
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Top Stories
Auto Sales Per U.S. Dealership May Rise to Record in 2012

U.S. auto sales per dealership may rise to a record in 2012 as demand increases and automakers’ dealership networks stabilize, according to an industry consulting firm. Sales per dealer increased 9.6 percent to 719 vehicles last year, dealership consultant Urban Science said today in its annual Automotive Franchise Activity Report. “You’re seeing a more healthy, more profitable dealer network,” John Frith, an Urban Science vice president, told reporters [Tuesday] in a briefing in Detroit.
Source: Bloomberg

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Electric Vehicle Tax Credit May Rise

The budget President Barack Obama proposed Monday would increase the tax credit for buyers of electric vehicles -- from the $7,500 maximum to a $10,000 maximum -- and expand the credit to other "advanced technology vehicles." Under the proposal, the tax credit would apply to vehicles that operate primarily using an alternative to gasoline, as long as that technology is not currently widespread in the U.S. The budget is for the fiscal year starting Oct. 1 and is not expected to pass Congress.
Source: Detroit Free Press

Related article

 Opinion: Electric Isn't the Only 'Green Car' Solution (

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Lower Prices, Higher Incomes Boost Auto Sales

It was financially easier to buy a new vehicle the fourth quarter last year than any time since the third quarter of 2009, when auto sales were at a modern low because of the recession ... Comerica Bank, based in Dallas and an insatiable tracker of such things, says the cost of buying and financing a new buggy took 23.1 weeks of median family income in the fourth quarter. People "feel more confident about unleashing their pent-up demand for automobiles," [says Robert Dye, chief economist at Comerica], meaning "more upside potential for auto sales in early 2012."
Source: USA Today

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 Competition Forces Auto Lenders to Longer Terms, Lower Rates (Automotive News)
 GM Expands West Coast 0% New-Car Loan Program (Automotive News)

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Nebraska's Loy Todd Elected Chairman of the Automotive Trade Association Executives


The Automotive Trade Association Executives (ATAE) has elected Loy Todd as chairman for 2012. The announcement was made at the organization’s annual meeting, held
earlier this month during the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) Convention and Expo in Las Vegas. “It is a great honor to represent such an outstanding organization,” Todd said. “I’m looking forward to working with the dealers along with the leadership and staff of NADA.”
Source: NADA Newsroom

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Penske's Earnings Gain 65%

Penske Automotive Group Inc. on Wednesday reported a 65% increase in fourth-quarter profit as consumers bought more vehicles at its dealerships and paid higher prices. Penske, like other car dealerships, has experienced a reversal of fortune as U.S. consumers have bought more vehicles at higher prices with fewer incentives. Limited supply has also driven up the prices of used cars. The company said the average transaction price for a new car rose 4.4% over last year to $38,816, while the average used-car transaction price rose 1.3% to $26,034.
Source: The Wall Street Journal

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Auto Show Concept Cars Go from Wild to Mild

In their day, the jaw-dropping looks of concept cars such as the Dodge Copperhead, Chrysler Atlantic and Plymouth Howler merited rock-star treatment at auto shows. Today, however, in a more cynical age of downsized dreams and tight development budgets, the wild concept car — auto show eye candy — is becoming rarer. Today's "concepts" are more likely to be mere flashier interpretations of the showroom versions of models already green-lighted for production. "We don't have the disposable cash to vent some of these out," laments Ralph Gilles, chief designer for Chrysler Group. "A lot of us on the design committee sort of miss the crazy days."
Source: USA Today

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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. For more information, visit

"You’re seeing a more healthy, more profitable dealer network."

-- John Frith, a vice president with industry consulting firm Urban Science, which found sales per dealership may rise to a record in 2012, Bloomberg, Feb. 15

NADA - National Automobile Dealers Association


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