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October 2, 2017 FacebookTwitterFlickrRSSSEND TO A FRIENDPRINT
Inside this issue
Lyft Deal Clarifies Ford's Mobility Path
Keith Crain: It's Never the Dealers' Fault
Braman Sues BMW, Audi Over Bonuses
'Data-Driven' EPA Review Pits Facts vs. Other Facts
VWs U.S. Dealers Prevail in Atlas Naming
Top Stories
Lyft Deal Clarifies Ford's Mobility Path

Seeking an edge through a GM partner that's gaining influence

In the not-too-distant past, Ford Motor Co. tying itself to a company part-owned by General Motors would have been analogous to treason in Detroit. But petty rivalries and marketing wars over pickup beds are of little concern as executives focus on making the right multimillion-dollar bets to keep their companies relevant amid challenges from unfamiliar foes such as Google and even the vacuum-maker Dyson.
Source: Automotive News

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Keith Crain: It's Never the Dealers' Fault

To sell new vehicles successfully in this country, you need a great line of desirable products that are priced right and backed by clever marketing. When you have that combination, everyone is a winner: the factory, dealers and suppliers. But when the factory fails to do its part and things are not going well in the showrooms, it is too easy to put all the blame on the dealer network. Yet after dealers have spent time and money on the latest and greatest factory-required programs, nothing will have changed unless the automaker delivers the goods in terms of products and marketing. Yet after dealers have spent time and money on the latest and greatest factory-required programs, nothing will have changed unless the automaker delivers the goods in terms of products and marketing. Click here for the full commentary.
Source: Automotive News

Keith Crain is editor-in-chief of Automotive News.

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Braman Sues BMW, Audi Over Bonuses

Braman Dealerships, of Miami, has sued BMW and Audi, saying changes to each brand's incentive program amounts to unfair and illegal alterations to their franchise agreements. At the core of the two lawsuits are claims that each automaker, as the suit against Audi puts it, "has unlawfully enhanced its control over dealer operations by unilaterally changing its contractual relationship with the dealers, imposing arbitrary business practices that reduced dealer profit." BMW of North America did not respond to requests for comment.
Source: Automotive News

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'Data-Driven' EPA Review Pits Facts vs. Other Facts

The federal government's review of fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards for next decade is supposed to be a technical, data-driven exercise. Such a by-the-numbers approach is supposed to lead to an objective determination, free of politics, of whether automakers can realistically meet the standards agreed to in 2011 or deserve some leeway. But policymaking never takes place in a political vacuum ...
Source: Automotive News

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VWs U.S. Dealers Prevail in Atlas Naming

Volkswagen’s commitment to greater independence for regional decision-making around the world paid dividends in spring 2016 when its U.S. dealer council objected to the initial name of the all-new 3-row CUV to be built in Chattanooga, Tenn. The name was Teramont, in fitting with the Touareg and Tiguan utility vehicles that had come before, but the dealers rolled their eyes at yet another T-based tongue twister. Meanwhile, the name Atlas was in consideration as well, and the dealers embraced it heartily, says Hinrich Woebcken, president and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America.
Source: WardsAuto

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Quotable
"I think we're in a period of great change in the industry where we're seeing interesting bedfellows — and multiple bedfellows. Each automaker's making a number of bets. Nobody knows what this picture of new mobility looks like."

    -- Michelle Krebs, senior analyst with Autotrader, commenting on Ford Motor Co.'s partnership with Lyft, which is part-owned by General Motors, Automotive News, Oct. 2

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