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Thursday, May 3, 2012 FacebookTwitterFlickrRSSSEND TO A FRIENDPRINT
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Inside this issue
New Fuel Rules Will Cost Feds, Drivers
North America Boosts GM's First-Quarter Results
BMW Joins VW, Daimler Beating Estimates as Porsche Gains
Chrysler Minivan No. 1 for 29 Years Profits Marchionne
Four Chrysler Plants to Skip Summer Shutdown to Meet Sales Demand
Forget the Kids, Baby Boomers Drive Car Sales Boom
Click here for more auto industry news at NADAFrontPage.com. .
Top Stories
New Fuel Rules Will Cost Feds, Drivers

Analysis finds cars that sip gas siphon tax funds for roads
Rising fuel-efficiency standards will cut gas tax revenue by $57 billion through 2025, the Congressional Budget Office said in a report released Wednesday. The government should consider hiking the 18.4 cent per gallon federal gas tax — which hasn't been increased since 1993 — or cutting spending on road repairs or paying for repairs through the general budget, the report said. The Obama administration reached a deal with 13 major automakers in July to hike fuel standards to 54.5 mpg between 2017 and 2025. Gloria Bergquist, spokeswoman for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, which represents a dozen automakers, including those from Detroit, said the study showed the new rules have costs. "There are always policy trade-offs for CAFE standards. Adding more technology hurts affordability. Smaller cars raise safety concerns. And gas-sipping vehicles take revenues out of federal and state coffers.”
Source: The Detroit News

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North America Boosts GM's First-Quarter Results

General Motors earned $1 billion in the first quarter as a strong performance in North America helped it overcome troubles in Europe. The results easily beat Wall Street estimates, lifting GM's stock price in pre-market trading Thursday. Despite problems, GM was able to post its sixth straight quarterly profit since its initial public stock offering in November of 2010.
Source: The Associated Press

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BMW Joins VW, Daimler Beating Estimates as Porsche Gains

Germany’s car industry has confounded analyst predictions, again. BMW, the world’s largest maker of luxury autos, became the third of the nation’s top three carmakers to beat analyst estimates with a 19 percent increase in first-quarter profit. Volkswagen AG and Daimler AG last week also said earnings rose, countering expectations for a decline. Carmakers and their suppliers are the best performing shares in Europe this year as demand for BMW, Mercedes and Audi models thrives in the U.S. and China.
Source: Bloomberg

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Chrysler Minivan No. 1 for 29 Years Profits Marchionne

Almost 30 years after the minivan was introduced, after attacks from all sides, Chrysler Group LLC remains on top. Now, CEO Sergio Marchionne will have to decide how best to sustain the success. So far, the moves made by Marchionne, who is preparing to merge Chrysler with majority owner Fiat SpA, have paid off. The choice he faces now: whether to merge Chrysler’s two remaining minivans into one and whether to dramatically redesign one or both. Either way, Marchionne and his dealers are committed to Chrysler’s signature product. “I don’t care if the minivan market shrinks as long as I’m King Kong in it,” Chuck Eddy, a Chrysler dealer in Austintown, Ohio, said in a phone interview.
Source: Bloomberg

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Four Chrysler Plants to Skip Summer Shutdown to Meet Sales Demand

Chrysler said Wednesday that it will keep four plants running through July without observing the traditional two-week summer shutdown and has begun production of the Dodge Dart in Belvidere, Ill. Belvidere, Toluca, Mexico, Toledo, and Jefferson North will stay open to keep up with demand, which for many Chrysler products continues running well ahead of the industry's overall selling pace.
Source: Detroit Free Press

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Forget the Kids, Baby Boomers Drive Car Sales Boom

Automakers are turning to buyers like 64-year-old Martin Friedman for the same reason Willie Sutton robbed banks: That's where the money is. Friedman, retired three years ago as a Wayne County (Mich.) court reporter, recently leased a 2012 Cadillac SRX. People age 50 and older now buy more than 6 of every 10 new vehicles sold -- 62% -- says a new study from J.D. Power and AARP. That's up sharply from 39% in 2001 when Power began tracking the data. "The amazing thing is the retirees. They're coming in waves," said Dan Frost, owner of Cadillac of Novi and also Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge-Ram dealerships in Michigan. "They used to be cash buyers. Now we're getting them into leases so they come back in a few years."
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. For more information, visit www.nada.org.

 
Quotable
"The U.S. economic recovery, record demand for GM vehicles in China and the global growth of the Chevrolet brand helped deliver solid earnings for General Motors."

   
-- Dan Akerson, GM chairman and CEO, The Associated Press, May 3

 

 

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