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Inside this issue
Opinion: NADA Has Something For Everyone
Toyota Ousts GM to Reclaim Global Sales Crown
Ford Beating General Motors in Race to Europe Turnaround
How Will GM Look Under Akerson's Global Brand Push? Brazil Gives Clues
Certified-Used Sales Hit Record in 2012
Ford, Nissan, Daimler Team Up For Common Fuel Cell System Development
Liability Issues Create Potholes on the Road to Driverless Cars
57 Dealers Nominated For Time Magazine Award
Click here for more auto industry news at NADAFrontPage.com. .
Top Stories
Opinion: NADA Has Something For Everyone
By Keith Crain

Click here to view commentary on the NADA Convention from Automotive News.

Editor's note: For more information or to register for the 2013 NADA Convention and Expo, go to www.nadaconventionandexpo.org. The early registration discount (a $75 savings) and the discounted rate on NADA's block of hotel rooms ends Thursday, Jan. 31.

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Toyota Ousts GM to Reclaim Global Sales Crown

Japanese car maker Toyota Motor Corp. has reclaimed its position as the world's No. 1 car maker by sales. On Monday, Toyota said that it sold a record 9.75 million vehicles last year. Detroit-based General Motors Co. sold 9.29 million vehicles over the same period. GM had been the top-selling automaker for more than seven decades before losing the title to Toyota in 2008. GM retook the sales crown in 2011, when Toyota's production was hurt by the quake and tsunami in northeastern Japan. The No. 3 player, Germany's Volkswagen AG, sold 9.1 million vehicles.
Source: USA Today

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Ford Beating General Motors in Race to Europe Turnaround

When Ford Motor Co. posts fourth- quarter results tomorrow, the numbers probably won't look great, likely the lowest operating profit of the year. Those figures mask the optimism coming from an unlikely place: Europe. Using its turnaround in the U.S. as a road map, Ford is moving more briskly to recover in Europe than its competitors. While Ford will report a loss of more than $1.5 billion for the full year in Europe and has forecast a similar result for 2013, Chief Financial Officer Bob Shanks said in an interview this month during the Detroit auto show, those losses will begin to disappear in about two years.
Source: Bloomberg

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How Will GM Look Under Akerson's Global Brand Push? Brazil Gives Clues

As General Motors Co. CEO Dan Akerson works on a global corporate reorganization, the decisions he faces are playing out in one of the company's most important emerging markets: Brazil. The automaker is evaluating how it will structure management in the country after the former president of GM Brazil, Grace Lieblein, switched to head of global purchasing in December. GM is holding off on replacing her as it determines what kind of role the person will have, said Jaime Ardila, president of GM South America. Akerson, as part of the overhaul, is pushing to increase accountability and flexibility as the U.S. automaker slugs it out globally with Toyota Motor Corp. and Volkswagen AG.
Source: Bloomberg

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Certified-Used Sales Hit Record in 2012

Smaller brands, newer programs account for the biggest gains

Kia Motors America's certified used-vehicle program doubled its sales last year, to 20,076 units. From a much larger base, sales of Ford Motor Co.'s certified used vehicles rose by roughly one-third in 2012, to 172,536. Gains were common across the industry last year. Franchised dealers of all brands sold a record 1,834,746 certified used cars and trucks, a 5 percent increase over 2011, according to data compiled by the Automotive News Data Center and Autodata Corp. And certified-used programs aim to push forward this year.
Source: Automotive News

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Ford, Nissan, Daimler Team Up For Common Fuel Cell System Development

Ford Motor Co., Nissan Motor Co. and Daimler AG have jointly agreed to develop a common automobile fuel cell system, which is expected to lead the launch of the world's first mass-market fuel-cell vehicle by 2017. The automakers said Monday they will collaborate on a global program across three continents in an effort to signal to suppliers, policymakers and the industry the seriousness of developing an emission-free technology.
Source: The Detroit News

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Liability Issues Create Potholes on the Road to Driverless Cars

Arizona lawmakers last year were debating a law laying out guidelines for an up-and-coming technology: self-driving vehicles. Then they got to a question they couldn't steer around: Who is to blame if a driverless car gets in a wreck? When there is no driver, the answer turns complicated, and the possible targets of lawsuits expand. Is it the company that designed the technology? The car's owner, or a passenger who should have assumed control? The auto maker that built the car? The skirmishing over laws to allow self-driving cars is a lesson in the difficulties that arise when new technologies run into the dollars-and-cents concerns of corporations. Some states are starting to consider how the legal landscape should change for vehicles in which a driver isn't always in control.
Source: The Wall Street Journal

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57 Dealers Nominated For Time Magazine Award

Fifty-seven auto dealers have been nominated by automotive trade associations for the 2013 Time Dealer of the Year award. The nominees were announced by Time magazine and Ally Financial, this year's sponsor. The program honors franchised new-vehicle dealers for exceptional performance in their dealerships and distinguished community service. A panel of faculty members from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan selects four finalists and then the award winner. The award is presented by Time and the National Automobile Dealers Association. The 2013 award winner will be announced Feb. 9 at the NADA convention. Click here for a list of the nominees.
Source: Automotive News

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Quotable
"Rather than going after numbers, we hope to make fine products, one by one, to keep out customers satisfied."

   
-- Shino Yamada, Toyota spokeswoman, commenting on the automaker reclaiming its position as the world's No. 1 car maker by sales, USA Today, Jan. 28

 

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