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Inside this issue
Honda Chief Vows to Take More Time to Develop Products
Prominent GM Shareholder Says Now Isn't Time For FCA Deal
NHTSA Blocks Former Chief From Toyota Testimony
China Auto Sales Slump for First Time in More Than Two Years
Automakers Wary of Handset Fate as Google and Apple Enter Cars
Crazy 'Beatnik Bubbletop' Goes to Auction
Click here for more auto industry news at NADAFrontPage.com. .
Top Stories
Honda Chief Vows to Take More Time to Develop Products

To illustrate his vision for a turnaround at recall-slammed Honda, Takahiro Hachigo, the new chief executive, showed video footage set to ’50s-style rock music of happy people with Honda products, like a lawn mower and the Asimo walking robot. But that kind of almost nostalgic look back was close to summarizing what he offered. “I believe in the power of Honda people,” he told a packed news conference at Honda Motor Co.’s Tokyo headquarters Monday, after his appointment as CEO and president was approved by shareholders and the company board. Hachigo promised to take more time in product development, bring his employees together as a team and improve communication within the company, to avoid the recurrence of quality lapses that have led to shrinking profits at the Japanese automaker.
Source: Associated Press
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Prominent GM Shareholder Says Now Isn't Time For FCA Deal

"The complexities of an auto merger are massive, historically they have not had very good results."

Harry Wilson, the former Obama auto task force adviser who pushed General Motors earlier this year to repurchase $5 billion of its own stock, says a deal between GM and Fiat Chrysler is not a good idea. Asked Tuesday morning on CNBC whether a merger or acquisition between the two automakers that went through taxpayer-funded bankruptcies should happen, Wilson said, "I don't think so. I have no disrespect for Sergio Marchionne (CEO of FCA). He's a really smart guy," Wilson said. "It's true that there's a lot of misspent capital in the auto industry, but that is only part of the equation. The complexities of an auto merger are massive; historically, they have not had very good results."
Source: Detroit Free Press
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NHTSA Blocks Former Chief From Toyota Testimony

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration blocked the agency’s former chief from testifying as a witness for Toyota Motor Corp. in a California civil suit, saying it could put the agency at risk. In a July 1 letter obtained by The Detroit News, a NHTSA lawyer told former Administrator David Strickland that he could not testify in a class-action lawsuit against Toyota. The case involves Toyota’s Smart Key push-button ignition system, and whether it violates a federal regulation designed to prevent theft and roll-away risk.
Source: The Detroit News

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China Auto Sales Slump for First Time in More Than Two Years

China’s passenger-vehicle sales fell for the first time in more than two years as the nation’s economic growth slowed and a stock-market rout dented buying sentiment. Retail deliveries of cars, multipurpose vehicles and SUVs fell 3.2 percent in June from a year earlier to 1.43 million units, the China Passenger Car Association said Wednesday on its website. Sales last fell in February 2013, according to the group.
Source: Bloomberg
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Automakers Wary of Handset Fate as Google and Apple Enter Cars

Toyota Motor Corp. hasn’t had to worry too much about Google Inc. as a competitor so far. That’s beginning to change in the eyes of customers like Jeff Carpenter. The 43-year-old engineer has a smartphone with the search giant’s Android software that can predict where he’s likely to drive next and how long it will take to get there. The problem is that those features aren’t available in his Camry or any other Toyota. So Carpenter, who has been a loyal customer since he was in his 20s, is switching to another carmaker. Toyota and the auto industry face a dilemma: As Google and Apple Inc. begin to move into their business, automakers must decide whether to hold them off and risk losing customers like Carpenter or embrace their technology and open the door to two of the most feared names in technology.
Source: Bloomberg
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Crazy 'Beatnik Bubbletop' Goes to Auction


Photo credit: Auctions America

To anyone who spies it on the highway, it becomes an automatic "What is it?" In fact, it's the Beatnik Bubbletop, a mashup of different Cadillac, Chrysler and Lincolns that were combined to create a homage to some of the crazier concept cars of the 1950s and 1960s. It's going on the block at Auctions America's Santa Monica event on July 17 and 18.
Source: USA Today
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Quotable
"I believe in the power of Honda people."

    -- Honda CEO Takahiro Hachigo, on his vow to turnaround the recall-slammed automaker, Associated Press, July 7

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