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Inside this issue
NADA Convention: 32 Hotels Sold Out; Limited Number of Rooms Available in New Orleans
Now, Tesla Really Has A Headache; Someone Grab the Tylenol
Analyst: Ford's Mulally 'Likely' to Head Microsoft
Automakers Add Q4 Production
Good Job is Good Enough as Subprime Buyers Help U.S. Sales
Charlie Cook Commentary: Damage Assessment
A UAW First: Nominee Dennis Williams Hasn't Had Auto Plant Job
Jaguar Goes to Dark Side for Rookie Super Bowl Ad
Click here for more auto industry news at NADAFrontPage.com. .
Top Stories
NADA Convention: 32 Hotels Sold Out; Limited Number of Rooms Available in New Orleans

Dealers and their managers planning to attend the 2014 NADA Convention & Expo in New Orleans should register as soon as possible and book one of the few remaining hotel rooms. Thirty-two out of 35 hotels in the NADA convention block have already sold out. Only three hotels have rooms available. “With numerous conferences and events scheduled in New Orleans over the same dates as the NADA convention, hotel rooms are filling up quickly and there's limited space,” said NADA Convention Chairman Desmond Roberts. “NADA's hotel rates are guaranteed to be the lowest in town.” To accommodate the increase in convention registration, the Courtyard St. Charles and Hilton St. Charles were added to the hotel block. The Hyatt Regency is also still available. The NADA convention runs Jan. 24-27. Dealers and their managers who register by Jan. 16 will receive at $75 discount from the on-site rate. For more information or to register, visit www.nadaconvention.org.
Source: NADAFrontPage.com
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Now, Tesla Really Has A Headache; Someone Grab the Tylenol

For the third time in 6 weeks, a Tesla Model S caught fire today, destroying the vehicle. The good news is this fire, near Murfreesboro, Tenn., again allowed the driver to escape unharmed. The bad news for Tesla is one freak incident is easily dismissed. The second one, in which a wall literally came down, seemed absurd. But three in such a short time frame creates the perception that something is wrong here. While the company is investigating whether something is — and will likely face a National Highway Transportation Safety Administration investigation this go round — Tesla already has a problem to overcome even if these accidents ultimately prove to be an anomaly. Perception has a funny way of becoming reality. For a company that until recently could do little wrong, the expression, “Tesla's on fire!” which was being used in relation to the company's shares, is taking on a very different meaning.
Source: Forbes

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Analyst: Ford's Mulally 'Likely' to Head Microsoft

Microsoft shares have rising on news reports that the technology giant is closing in on finding a new CEO, with Ford's Alan Mulally considered a top-five candidate. On Thursday, Microsoft closed at $37.50, down 68 cents a share or 1.8%. But it's up from about $33 earlier this month, and climbed slightly from last week. Part of the reason is because the CEO change is in the air. One influential analyst is throwing his predictive weight behind the affable Mulally to replace retiring CEO Steve Ballmer. "We think it likely that Ford Motor CEO Alan Mulally is Microsoft's top pick based on the merits of his candidacy and will be named Microsoft's new CEO in a month or so," writes Nomura Equity Research's Rick Sherlund in a note to investors Wednesday. Before coming to Ford in 2006, Mulally ran Boeing's commercial aircraft business from Seattle, near Microsoft's headquarters. Click here to see why Sherlund believes Mullaly will be Microsoft's new CEO.
Source: USA Today
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Automakers Add Q4 Production

After reviewing their latest sales and inventory figures, automakers boosted already robust fourth-quarter North American production plans by 2.2%, putting October-December car and truck output on track to hit 4,124,000 units – fourth-best for the period. The industry's best Q4 performance was 1999, when 4,429,811 vehicles were built, including record-output in the U.S. (3,273,327 units) and Canada (775,288). In a sign of the country's increased role in North American production, Mexican plants are scheduled to build 793,100 vehicles in October-December, a new benchmark more than double the 381,196 units assembled in 1999 and 5.5% ahead of the record 751,808 turned out just a year ago. Rebounding demand has prompted automakers to boost Q4 truck output by 2.8%, or 64,200 units, while car production is up just 1.3%, or 22,500 units.
Source: WardsAuto
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Good Job is Good Enough as Subprime Buyers Help U.S. Sales

Alan Helfman, a car dealer in Houston, served a woman in his showroom last month with a credit score lower than 500 and a desire for a new Dodge Dart for her daily commute. She drove away with a new car. A year ago, with a credit ranking in the bottom eighth percentile, “I would've told her don't even bother coming in,” said Helfman, who owns River Oaks Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, where sales rose about 20 percent this year. “But she had a good job, so I told her to bring a phone bill, a light bill, your last couple of paycheck stubs and bring me some down payment.” While surging light-vehicle sales have been one of the bright spots in the U.S. economy, it's increasingly being fueled by borrowers with imperfect credit.
Source: Bloomberg
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Charlie Cook Commentary: Damage Assessment

Democratic dreams of long-term Republican fallout may be fading as Obamacare rollout issues grab the spotlight

The noise you hear is the grinding of Democratic teeth over the botched launch and arguably deeper design problems of the Affordable Care Act. Democratic pols had been gleefully anticipating the negative impact the Republican Party would incur as a result of the recent government shutdown debacle. Their biggest concern, in fact, was whether the fallout could last 13 months until the November 2014 midterm elections. In truth, Democratic expectations may have been outsize to begin with. After budget showdowns and government shutdowns, both sides often lose, even if one side loses more than the other. The outcome is never a zero-sum game. National polls conducted immediately after the shutdown—but before the rollout of the ACA website—made it clear that Republicans took a much bigger hit than Democrats in the shutdown aftermath. However, not to be ignored, polls showed that Democrats in Congress also took a hit. Now Democrats are shaking their heads over signs that much of any advantage they might have gained has been effectively neutralized. Their concerns stretch beyond the current HealthCare.gov website problems and reflect fears that other political mines in the implementation of the ACA could make things even worse for their party. They are working against the political clock, as the shelf life of the government-shutdown problems for the GOP runs out (assuming no additional shutdown/debt-default scares, which is hardly a safe assumption).
Source: The Cook Political Report
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A UAW First: Nominee Dennis Williams Hasn't Had Auto Plant Job

Union leaders nominated Dennis Williams, who has never built a car, to become the next president of the United Auto Workers and reduced the number of vice presidents from four to three, in moves that highlight the changes sweeping through Solidarity House. If elected by delegates at the UAW's next annual convention in Detroit — and they have never failed to elect the official candidate for president — Williams, 60, will succeed President Bob King when his term ends in June. It would be the first time in the union's history that the president was someone who has not worked in an automobile factory. Williams was building tractors for Case when he joined the UAW in 1977. And it marks a major shift in the UAW's emphasis toward the foreign automakers operating in the South that many see as key to the union's future.
Source: The Detroit News

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Jaguar Goes to Dark Side for Rookie Super Bowl Ad

Bad guys make for good marketing campaigns. That's the thinking behind Jaguar's plans for its rookie ad appearance in the Super Bowl. The carmaker said Thursday that it will use a "British Villains" theme for its first-ever Big Game ad and the theme will continue in other upcoming commercials and social media marketing (hashtag #goodtobebad). The Big Game ad will feature the new F-Type coupe, a teaser photo of which Jag released this week. The much-awaited coupe version of the F-Type sports car will get its global unveiling at an event ahead of the L.A. Auto Show on Nov. 19.
Source: USA Today

Editor's note: The second annual NADA/J.D. Power Western Automotive Conference will be held at the Biltmore Hotel on Tuesday, Nov. 19 preceding press days at the Los Angeles Auto Show. Click here for more information or to register.
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More Articles
 
Quotable
"Tesla's on fire!" 

   --- Mark Rogowsky, commenting on an expression that used to refer to Tesla's soaring stock price, Forbes, Nov. 7

NADA Market Beat
October Sales Up From Last Year
Chairman's Column
A Season of Thanks
Videos

  NADA Chairman Speaks to Detroit Auto Press (NADA-TV)
NADA Webinars
(All webinars begin at 1 p.m. ET. Click webinar title to register.) 

- Nov. 13: U.S. Car Sales – The Year in Review and a Look Ahead

- Nov. 20: DMS Access Concerns (Part II)

For more information about the webinars, click here.

NADA Foundation News
Ambassador Spotlight: Richard Kull Promoted Charitable Giving through the NADA Foundation
 
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