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Inside this issue
GM Works to Wow Customers; Exec Says Repeat Business Target in Sight
Ford Experiencing Rapid Sales Growth in Coastal Markets
U.S. Senate Committee Probes Implications of Semi-Autonomous Cars
Tesla's Market Value Soars, but Some See a Bubble
Fiat: Shift of Headquarters to U.S. Not on Agenda
LA Auto Show's Connected Car Expo
Click here for more auto industry news at NADAFrontPage.com. .
Top Stories
GM Works to Wow Customers; Exec Says Repeat Business Target in Sight

In 2011, General Motors Co. North America President Mark Reuss announced a bold goal: He wanted the automaker to have the best customer service in the automobile industry. Internally, the company has narrowed its focus to meet that goal. More resources — money and people — in the past few years have been devoted to wow customers, working with them to resolve conflicts and improve vehicle quality and service. And last year, for the first time, part of the company's 27,000 U.S. salaried workers' bonuses were based on meeting a customer retention target — one it failed to meet, Reuss said in a recent interview. A percentage of GM salaried workers' variable pay is based on the company meeting customer retention thresholds for sales and service, he said.
Source: The Detroit News
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Ford Experiencing Rapid Sales Growth in Coastal Markets

Ford Motor Co.'s shift to beef up car offerings that appeal to coastal markets is accelerating ahead of schedule. Led by the new C-Max compact hybrid and revamped Fusion midsize car and Escape compact SUV — three of the five vehicles that comprise Ford's self-created "supersegment," a segment comprised of subcompact, compact and midsize cars plus compact SUVs — the Dearborn automaker says it is experiencing extremely rapid sales growth in uncharted markets like New York, Los Angeles and Miami.
Source: The Detroit News
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U.S. Senate Committee Probes Implications of Semi-Autonomous Cars

Self-driving cars could be just five years away, according to some witnesses testifying at a hearing before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation that was webcast Wednesday. In the interim, lawmakers at the hearing ponder a range of policy implications and risks posed by the latest advancements in semi-autonomous-vehicle technology, questioning those testifying about what rules or standards might be needed nationwide. U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Admin. Administrator David Strickland assures the senators his agency will continue to investigate all levels of automation to see whether more electronics in cars can increase safety. Last year, fatalities on U.S. highways increased 5.3% to about 34,000, he says, the first year-to-year increase since 2005. “The advanced safety technologies we are discussing today can help reduce these numbers significantly.”
Source: WardsAuto
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Tesla's Market Value Soars, but Some See a Bubble

As Tesla's fortunes soar, some question its true value

Tesla Motors is on a remarkable run for a company that not long ago seemed to be sputtering. In the past month, Tesla's stock value has doubled to more than $90 a share. That gives the California-based company a total market value of $10.6 billion, greater than that of Italian automaker Fiat, worth less than $8 billion. But some analysts say the electrifying rise is not what it seems. Take that Fiat comparison: In the first quarter of this year, Fiat sold 1 million cars and made a $40 million profit. Tesla sold 4,900 cars and, not counting the sale of regulatory credits under California law, lost $53 million, or more than $10,000 per car. But some analysts still say the company's share price is a bubble on a par with foamy tech-era stocks. It is selling for roughly 600 times its estimated 2013 earnings.
Source: The Washington Post
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Fiat: Shift of Headquarters to U.S. Not on Agenda

Fiat S.p.A. said the idea of moving the group's legal headquarters to the United States following a planned merger with Chrysler Group is not on the company's agenda. "This issue, treated several times in the last year by the world's media, is not the order of the day as the Chief Executive of Fiat, Sergio Marchionne, has recently reiterated," a Fiat spokesman said in a statement. The statement referred to a Bloomberg report this week, citing people familiar with the matter, as saying Fiat was considering moving its headquarters to the United States. No final decision on the headquarters has been made and other options are being examined ... Bloomberg reported.
Source: Reuters
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LA Auto Show's Connected Car Expo

No trend in the auto industry is more topical than advanced technology platforms. To underscore that fact, the LA Auto Show confirmed that two dozen automotive technology experts from companies such as Aha Radio, Auto Alliance, BMW, Delphi, Ford, Gracenote, Hughes Telematics, INRIX, J.D. Power & Associates, Kia, Livio, Pandora, QNX, Sprint Velocity, Strategy Analytics and others, have signed on to participate in the 2013 Connected Car Expo (CCE). The National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) and J.D. Power & Associates, as part of its Western Automotive Conference, have also joined forces with CCE. Together they will address the increasingly important role the dealer plays when training, selling and servicing technology with the end user.
Source: Live Trading News
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Quotable
"This connected-vehicle technology has the potential to revolutionize our transportation system by drawing drivers' attention to risks more immediately and reliably, providing protection in cases when driver attention is deficient and giving drivers more time to react."

   
-- Peter Sweatman, head of the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, commenting on the benefit of semi-autonomous cars, WardsAuto, May 16
Videos

 Video: NADA Chief Economist Paul Taylor Discusses 1st Quarter Global Auto Sales in an Interview on CNBC (CNBC)


Video: NADA Analyst Jonathan Banks Predicts Strong Auto Sales in 2013 (NADA-TV)


 Automotive Forum 2013: Industry Leaders Convene in NYC (NADA-TV)

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NADA University
MarketINSIGHT Webinars

(All webinars begin at 1 p.m. ET. Click webinar title to register.)

- May 22: Multiply & Conquer With Multichannel Marketing

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- June 5: DMS Access: Practical and Regulatory Concerns

- June 12: Boost Revenues, Increase Car Counts at No Cost

For more information about the webinars, click here.
NADA Foundation News
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