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Inside this issue
Deadline to Participate in Dealership Workforce Study Extended to June 30
Fiat Chrysler CEO Marchionne Outlines Strategy for Growth
GM Engineer Involved with Previous Probes into Ignition Switch Issues Retires
Used Car Sales On Upswing
Few Car Buyers Start Out Knowing Exactly What They Want
Godzilla Pops Fiats Like Candy in New 30-Second Commercial
Click here for more auto industry news at NADAFrontPage.com. .
Top Stories
Deadline to Participate in Dealership Workforce Study Extended to June 30

To accommodate numerous requests from dealer members, the deadline to participate in the 2014 Dealership Workforce Study (DWS) was extended to June 30, 2014. Dealers are encouraged to submit their data as soon as possible in advance of the deadline to allow for the extensive data review process.

The DWS is the only NADA-ATD study that compares dealership compensation and benefits, retention and turnover and hours of operation to aggregated peer data. With the results, dealers can make data-based decisions on recruiting, hiring and motivating employees. Only NADA and ATD members are eligible to participate, and there is no cost.

It's easy to participate. There are separate processes for single dealership and dealer group enrollments. Further, participants in the 2013 study will find the survey conveniently pre-populated with their previous answers, which can be changed as necessary. Finally, this year's reports will be sent directly to the person identified as report recipient. Reports will be sent as soon as they are available.

Each participating dealership will receive a complimentary, customized Basic Report comparing its data against data aggregated on a regional and national basis—plus a complimentary, comprehensive Dealership Workforce Study Industry Report.

Participants can also purchase a customized Enhanced Report, which further compares individual dealership data against data for the franchise and state. Additional customized group reports are available, as is the Compensation and Tenure Search Tool, which enables ad hoc searches, including searches by dealership or dealer groups. Visit www.nadaworkforcestudy.com to participate.
Source: NADA Dealership Operations
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Fiat Chrysler CEO Marchionne Outlines Strategy for Growth

Sergio Marchionne, chief executive officer of Fiat SpA and Chrysler Group LLC, will lay out his plans at an investor day in Auburn Hills, Mich., [Tuesday] for the automakers through 2018. After successful turnarounds of each -- outlined in audacious five-year plans -- he's looking toward integration and growth of what later this year will become Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV. While falling short of volume targets, Marchionne has stuck to these strategic actions, so investors and other stakeholders including dealers and union leaders will be watching closely for how the new company aims to compete. Investors will have limited chances to ask Marchionne for details about the plan before or after first-quarter financial results come out tomorrow. Click here for seven key topics that are likely to come up.
Source: Bloomberg

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GM Engineer Involved with Previous Probes into Ignition Switch Issues Retires

General Motors Co. confirmed Monday that longtime company engineer Jim Federico — who was involved with previous GM investigations into ignition switch issues before the recalls were issued this year — has elected to retire. Federico, 56, was executive director of global vehicle integration. GM said he was eligible for retirement and it was his choice. His retirement is effective immediately. “Jim plans to take on new engineering and design challenges outside of the auto industry,” according to an announcement from GM on his retirement that described Federico as a “leading” and “accomplished” engineer.
Source: The Detroit News

Editor's note: For more information on the GM recall, go to www.gmignitionupdate.com or www.safercar.gov.
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Used Car Sales On Upswing

The used-car business is picking up steam. Used-car sales rose 3.65% last month compared to the same month a year ago, says auto industry numbers tracker CNW Research. The gains came for franchised dealers, independent dealers and even private parties. The hottest segment were the newest used cars, one to five years old, which were up 9%.
Source: USA Today
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Few Car Buyers Start Out Knowing Exactly What They Want

Car buyers' minds are far from made up when they enter the market. “There's a lot of cross-shopping, and not just in the vehicle segment they started out looking at,” says James Franchi, AutoTrader Group's division president-media, citing consumer interviews and online-shopping behavior research. Only 9% of online shoppers decide off the bat on an exact vehicle make. Just 31% initially are sure of the model. That means many people who start out looking at, say, midsize sedans could end up buying a CUV. “Consumers can get overwhelmed with information,” Franchi says at an automotive conference conducted by J.D. Power and the National Automobile Dealers Association.
Source: WardsAuto
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Godzilla Pops Fiats Like Candy in New 30-Second Commercial

The Fiat brand has launched a new commercial that ties in with the release of the latest Americanized version of the Godzilla franchise featuring the monster gobbling up Fiat 500s like candy. The 30-second spot was created by Moving Picture Company, the same Canadian visual arts company that did the visual effects for the movie. “Godzilla” opens in theaters on May 16.
Source: Automotive News
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Quotable

"In the right hands, I think it would significantly control the [fair credit] problem. And since the bureau has said that compliance programs may be an alternative to going to a flat, I think we should try this one out."  

   
-- Former CFPB official Rick Hackett, commenting on NADA's Fair Credit Compliance Program, F&I and Showroom, April 2014

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