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Inside this issue
How Old People Became the Future of the U.S. Auto Industry
Cadillac Seeks More 'Autonomy' from GM, de Nysschen Says
Ford Builds Medium-Duty Pickups in U.S. for First Time
Takata to Launch Awareness Campaign on Air Bag Recalls
Luxury Car Maker Fisker to Build Cars in Southern California
For Honda, Technology Isn't Just for the Young
Top Stories
How Old People Became the Future of the U.S. Auto Industry

Healthier and wealthier than ever, senior citizens want to drive into the twilight in Corvettes

American seniors have never been healthier or wealthier. At the same time, cars have never been crammed with more features to safeguard drivers with fuzzier vision, slower reactions, and stiffer necks. Those forces have created a powerful economic engine for car manufacturers. This might just be the first time ever that one of the most promising demographics for the auto industry is represented by Social Security recipients. The roads in America are going gray. From 2003 to 2013, the number of licensed drivers over the age of 65 surged by 8.2 million, a 29 percent increase, according to U.S. Census data. The very old were particularly stubborn about pulling over for good. There are now about 3.5 million U.S. drivers over 84, a staggering 43 percent increase over a decade ago.

From 1989 to 2013, spending by consumers age 65 to 74 surged 18 percent while outlays by those over age 75 increased 15 percent, according to a recent analysis by the New York Times. Every demographic group under age 55, on the other hand, is spending less once inflation is considered. Millennials had their earning potential clipped by the 2008 recession and are still burdened with massive student loan debt. Of all new cars registered last year, only 12 percent went to households led by someone under the age of 35. “Everything for this generation has just shifted,” says Steven Szakaly, an economist with the National Automobile Dealers Association. “Basically, they’re doing everything later in life, including getting married and buying a car.”
Source: Bloomberg
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Cadillac Seeks More 'Autonomy' from GM, de Nysschen Says

Cadillac will operate as a separate business unit from General Motors and report its own financial results within a few years, brand chief Johan de Nysschen said [Tuesday]. Speaking to Wall Street analysts during a conference in New York, de Nysschen said that by then, Cadillac will have "a far higher degree of autonomy and self sufficiency" by 2017, which will allow it to break out its own profit-and-loss statements.
Source: Automotive News

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Ford Builds Medium-Duty Pickups in U.S. for First Time

Ford celebrates the start of large pickup production in the U.S.

Joe Hinrichs, president of The Americas, was to be in Avon Lake, Ohio, for the production launch of the new 2016 Ford F-650 and F-750 medium-duty pickup trucks which had been built in Mexico in a joint venture plant with Navistar. Moving that work to the Ohio plant preserves about 1,400 jobs and represents a $168 million investment in a new body shop and tooling. "Our investment in Ohio Assembly Plant reinforces our commitment to building vehicles in America and to delivering best-in-class commercial trucks," said Hinrichs in a statement. "Working with our partners in the UAW, we found a way to make the costs competitive enough to bring production of a whole new generation of work trucks to Ohio."
Source: Detroit Free Press

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Takata to Launch Awareness Campaign on Air Bag Recalls

Embattled Japanese air bag manufacturer Takata Corp. plans to launch a new ad campaign and send a new mailing to the owners of millions of recalled vehicles by working with a major insurance industry group. Exploding Takata air bags are linked to at least eight deaths and more than 100 injuries. About 32 million vehicles have been recalled in the United States by 11 automakers. Just 2 million vehicles had been repaired as of Dec. 31. Takata agreed to a sweeping consent order with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in May and as part of it agreed to step up efforts to convince owners to get vehicles repaired.
Source: The Detroit News
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Luxury Car Maker Fisker to Build Cars in Southern California

Fisker Automotive is back in business.

The luxury car company will establish Southern California’s first new car manufacturing plant in more than two decades in the city of Moreno Valley, where it will begin building its plug-in electric hybrid automobiles. The admired but embattled Fisker, which filed for bankruptcy protection in 2013 and was purchased by Chinese auto parts giant Wanxiang Group a year later, has signed a long-term, $30-million lease for a 555,670 square-foot facility in the Riverside County city. Wanxiang Group also owns A123, the company that builds the lithium ion batteries that power the Fisker. The company is reportedly seeking to begin sales as soon as next year.
Source: The Los Angeles Times
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For Honda, Technology Isn't Just for the Young

When it comes to the changes Honda made to its freshened 2016 Accord, it’s what’s on the inside that counts. Look past the chrome-ier grille and LED taillights and you’ll notice Honda has integrated both Apple CarPlay and Google Android Auto into the dashboard. This makes the new Accord -- which goes on sale next week -- one of the first few vehicles on the market to offer compatibility with both systems.
Source: Automotive News
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Quotable
"We are preparing for the future."

    -- Cadillac brand chief Johan de Nysschen, commenting on the automaker working to improve the customer experience at its dealerships, Automotive News, Aug. 11

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