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Inside this issue
Ally Plans $5.9 Billion Buyback to Help Lender Exit U.S. Bailout
North America Light-Vehicle Production Sets July Record
Silverado, Sierra Pickups First in Class to Get 5 Stars Under Tougher U.S. Crash Tests
Toyota's Lexus Marque to Open Luxury Stores in Branding Push
Ferrari Plans Hybrids to Follow $1.34 Million LaFerrari
Rare '67 Ferrari Fetches $27M in Auction
Click here for more auto industry news at NADAFrontPage.com. .
Top Stories
Ally Plans $5.9 Billion Buyback to Help Lender Exit U.S. Bailout

Ally Financial Inc., the auto lender seeking to repay a U.S. bailout, is raising $1 billion in a private placement and said it will pay $5.9 billion in a plan to buy back preferred shares held by the Treasury Department. The actions are intended to strengthen the company's finances as it resubmits its capital plan to federal regulators, Ally said [Tuesday] in a statement. The deal includes the termination of an option that would have entitled the Treasury to more common stock if the value of Ally's shares fell below a certain threshold. Ally is looking for ways to pay back the $17.2 billion taxpayer rescue received during the global credit crisis, when subprime home loans threatened to sink the company. CEO Michael Carpenter refocused Ally on its auto lending roots, and has been selling assets to raise money while exploring the idea of an initial stock offering.
Source: Bloomberg
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North America Light-Vehicle Production Sets July Record

North American auto makers built 1,029,745 light vehicles in July, up 1.1% from year-ago and the best-ever result for the month. The record comes as several plants eliminated or reduced their traditionally scheduled summer shutdowns to maintain inventory levels, as sales in the region, especially the U.S., continued their steady rise. Several facilities already are working regularly above straight-time capacity. Light-truck builds set a July record with 586,401 units, up 10.8% from 529,426 in like-2012. Car production declined 9.3% for the month but rose 3.1% in the year's first seven months.
Source: WardsAuto
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Silverado, Sierra Pickups First in Class to Get 5 Stars Under Tougher U.S. Crash Tests

The 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra have received five-star overall safety ratings from U.S. safety regulators, giving General Motors a marketing edge over rival pickups. The Silverado and Sierra 1500, as well as the-top-of-the line Silverado High Country and Sierra Denali, were given the highest-possible five-star rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. They are the first large pickups to receive an overall rating of five stars since NHTSA implemented a tougher rating system for the 2011 model year, GM said. The new ratings include tests for side pole crashes and crash avoidance technologies, for example.
Source: Automotive News
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Toyota's Lexus Marque to Open Luxury Stores in Branding Push

Toyota Motor Corp.'s Lexus unit plans to open luxury stores offering consumers goods including coffee cups glazed with volcanic ash and Italian leather bags to help boost the premium marque's brand image worldwide. Japan's largest carmaker will open its first Intersect By Lexus store in Tokyo's Aoyama district on Aug. 30, it said in a statement. Lexus will add similar outlets in New York and Dubai, the Toyota City, Japan-based company said, without specifying a timeframe. Lexus's marketing effort comes as the Japanese carmaker aims to raise its global presence, after losing its luxury sales crown in the U.S. to Bayerische Motoren Werke AG and Daimler AG's Mercedes-Benz for two straight years. Mercedes also leads the Toyota unit by deliveries in the home market.
Source: Bloomberg
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Ferrari Plans Hybrids to Follow $1.34 Million LaFerrari

Ferrari SpA plans to build more hybrid vehicles following the success of the 1 million-euro ($1.34 million) LaFerrari as the manufacturer works to attract environmentally conscious wealthy buyers. “I don't believe in the electric cars, but I strongly believe in hybrids,” Chairman Luca Cordero di Montezemolo said in a Bloomberg Television interview with Sara Eisen at the manufacturer's headquarters in Maranello, Italy. Ferrari is part of a growing trend by automakers to offer high-performance cars with reduced emissions. Porsche AG will present the $845,000 production version of the 918 Spyder next month at the Frankfurt auto show, while Bayerische Motoren Werke AG (BMW) will showcase the i8 plug-in hybrid supercar. Land Rover said it will start selling its first hybrids, two sport-utility vehicles, in the U.K. in September.
Source: Bloomberg
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Rare '67 Ferrari Fetches $27M in Auction

A rare 1967 Ferrari owned by a North Carolina orphan-turned-millionaire sold at auction for $27.5 million. The red Ferrari was one of only 10 ever built, and its single-family ownership increased interest in the sale, the Los Angeles Times reported. The owner, the late Eddie Smith, was a former mayor of Lexington, N.C. He died in 2007 at age 88. Since then, the car has been stored in a specially built garage. The sale of the Ferrari 275 GTB/4*S N.A.R.T. Spider was handled by RM Auctions in Monterey. N.A.R.T. stands for North American Racing Team, a Ferrari-backed venture created in the late 1950s to promote the brand in the U.S.
Source: USA Today
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Quotable
"Ally has made great progress in restructuring and strengthening its business in order to repay the taxpayer, and we look forward to continuing to work with the company to recover the remaining investment."  

   
-- Tim Massad, U.S. Department of Treasury's assistant secretary for financial stability, commenting on Ally's plan to pay $5.9 billion in a plan to buy back preferred shares held by the Treasury Department, Bloomberg, Aug. 20
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