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Inside this issue
For 4th Straight Year, MPG is Top Reason a Shopper Buys a Vehicle
Falling Gasoline Prices Hurting Small-Car Sales, Fordís Hinrichs Says
Autoliv Has Contracts for 25 Million Replacement Takata Airbag Inflators
GMís Batey on Mergers: Thanks, But No Thanks
GM Accused of Misleading Investors Over Recalls
How Will the Newest Metal in Detroit Hold Up in the Used Market?
Two Italian Suppliers Pick Indiana for New U.S. Operations
ADESA to Auction a Harley-Davidson at the NADA Convention for Canine Companions
Click here for more auto industry news at NADAFrontPage.com. .
Top Stories
For 4th Straight Year, MPG is Top Reason a Shopper Buys a Vehicle

For the fourth straight year, new-vehicle buyers ranked fuel economy as the most influential factor in selecting a vehicle, J.D. Power and Associates said in a new report. Consumers are “going to own these vehicles for many, many years. They want [mileage] to remain low during their ownership period,” research director Jon Osborn told Automotive News. The 12th annual Avoider Study was based on responses from almost 30,000 owners who registered a vehicle in April or May 2014 -- before gasoline prices dropped to less than $2 in October, according to the AAA Fuel Gauge Report. The study looks at the reasons consumers purchase, reject or do not consider specific models when shopping for a new vehicle. J.D. Power fielded the study from July to September 2014.
Source: Automotive News
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Falling Gasoline Prices Hurting Small-Car Sales, Fordís Hinrichs Says

Ford is sticking to its guns when it comes to fielding a full product lineup despite a slump in car sales. Joe Hinrichs, president, The Americas, says the automaker's car deliveries, particularly small cars, have suffered because of the recent drop in gasoline prices and the growing popularity of CUVs and SUVs. “SUVs were growing before gas prices fell. They've been hot globally for quite some time and will continue to be hot,” Hinrichs says at the Automotive News World Congress. “The small-car segment has been declining for quite some time, and we've seen the acceleration of that in the second half of the year because of fuel prices primarily. We will keep an eye on that.”
Source: WardsAuto
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Autoliv Has Contracts for 25 Million Replacement Takata Airbag Inflators

Autoliv Inc., the world's largest supplier of automotive airbags, says it has signed contracts with several automakers to deliver up to 25 million inflators to fix potentially defective airbags produced by Takata Inc. In a statement Wednesday, Autoliv said it will produce the inflators this year and next, and is in discussions with automakers to deliver millions more. On Dec. 3, Autoliv confirmed plans to produce replacement inflators for Honda, but the Swedish supplier has not identified its other customers.
Source: Automotive News

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GMís Batey on Mergers: Thanks, But No Thanks

Alan Batey says he hopes to capitalize on the new strength he sees between GM and its dealers after last year's recall crisis brought the sometimes adversaries closer together

General Motors North American President Alan Batey says unlike his cross-town rival Sergio Marchionne he sees no urgency for a merger to slash product-development costs, preferring instead to pick and choose collaborations where it makes sense. “We collaborate if we find partners with similar needs and requirements,” Batey tells WardsAuto during an interview at the North American International Auto Show [in Detroit]. “We have scale. We are truly global,” he adds. “We're able to think globally. In the future, I don't see that changing.”
Source: WardsAuto
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GM Accused of Misleading Investors Over Recalls

General Motors Co. managers misled investors and regulators for years about issues connected to vehicle ignition switch defects, shareholders said in a lawsuit accusing the company of inflating the stock's value. GM CEO Mary Barra assured the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in February that the company had adequate internal controls over its finances the day before the first recall was announced, lawyers for investors said in a complaint filed late Thursday. Just weeks after Barra took over, GM recalled almost 800,000 cars because the ignition switch could slip out of the “run” position, shutting off the engine and safety features including airbags while the car was moving. The recall eventually expanded to 2.59 million vehicles and has been linked to at least 45 deaths. The consolidated complaint filed Thursday in U.S. district court in Flint, Mich., combines claims by investors that the automaker's handling of the recalls cheated them.
Source: Bloomberg

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How Will the Newest Metal in Detroit Hold Up in the Used Market?

When analysts who examine used vehicles and establish prices for them look at an all-new or redesigned car or pickup, they study exterior styling, engine specs and technical innovations. They also weigh factors such as price, incentives, competitors and deliveries to rental fleets. The idea is to get an idea of how a vehicle's value and consumer demand will hold up when it is sold to its second or third owner. Jonathan Banks, with NADA Used Car Guide, said the 2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe, which goes on sale this year, has the right looks and technology to serve as a halo for the brand. It and the company's other vehicles signal that overall used-vehicle values for the brand will hold up well, he adds. But there are some questions about the Volkswagen lineup. Larry Dixon, also with NADA Used Car Guide, said VW's five-passenger SUV concept is nice, but he noted that the company's heavy use of incentives to move new-vehicle inventory is an indication that the brand's used-vehicle demand and values might suffer down the road.
Source: Automotive News
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Two Italian Suppliers Pick Indiana for New U.S. Operations

Two Italian auto suppliers -- OMR Automotive and Sirmax -- picked Indiana for significant new operations, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence announced. Executives from Officine Meccaniche Rezzatesi, or OMR, joined Pence to announce the company's plans [Thursday] at the Detroit auto show. OMR makes components for engines, suspensions, gears, braking systems, chassis and integrated systems. Speedway, Ind., will become the home of OMR's North American headquarters by 2016. Speedway is a separate town within Indianapolis and is home to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Also [Thursday], Sirmax, another Italian auto supplier, committed to Indiana, Pence's office said in a statement. The company, based in Cittadella, Italy, supplies plastic compounds and resins to Volkswagen, Daimler, Peugeot-Citroen and Bosch among others.
Source: Automotive News

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ADESA to Auction a Harley-Davidson at the NADA Convention for Canine Companions

NADA Foundation to present $10,000 to Canine Companions Wounded Veterans Initiative

ADESA will auction a 2012 Harley-Davidson Heritage with 2,271 miles during the NADA Convention & Expo at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. The live auction begins at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 24, at the ADESA booth (#3619 Moscone North). There is no reserve. The auction is not open to the general public.

And earlier that same day, the National Automobile Dealers Charitable Foundation will provide a $10,000 grant to Canine Companions for Independence (CCI) at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 24 in the NADA Pavilion (#1301 Moscone South). Vietnam War veteran Marv Tuttle and his service dog will represent CCI. Bob Bunger, national director of development service for CCI, will accept the grant.

The proceeds from both events will benefit the NADA Foundation's Frank E. McCarthy Memorial Fund, which supports CCI. McCarthy served as NADA president for more than 30 years.

The 2015 NADA convention runs Thursday, Jan. 22, to Sunday, Jan. 25. For more information or to register, visit www.nadaconvention.org.
Source: NADA Public Affairs
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Quotable

"The small-car segment has been declining for quite some time, and we’ve seen the acceleration of that in the second half of the year because of fuel prices primarily. We will keep an eye on that."

   --- Joe Hinrichs, president, The Americas for Ford, commenting on falling gas prices and small car sales, WardsAuto, Jan. 16

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