NADA Headlines - Friday, July 8, 2011 (Plain Text Version)
62 mpg could put almost 300,000 out of work
A white paper from the Michigan-based Defour Group finds that a significant number of auto sector jobs would be lost if the federal government's proposed fuel economy mandates for Model Year (MY) 2017-2025 vehicles were implemented. Dean Drake, the paper's author, confirmed a U.S. Energy Information Administration estimate that automakers would sell 2.4 million (approximately 14 percent) fewer new vehicles if standards are set to hit 62 mpg by 2025. "Clearly, sales losses of this magnitude could be expected to lead to job losses in the industry," Drake said.
Editor's note: This study validates NADA’s position that depressed auto sales caused by overly aggressive fuel economy increases will result in job losses. Dealers support fuel economy increases and emission reductions but remain concerned that radical shifts in these mandates will prevent car buyers from finding the vehicle that fits their needs at a price they can afford. No one benefits unless more fuel-efficient vehicles are bought or leased. Click here to read the Defour Group white paper.
Toyota Motor Corp. has moved up its earthquake recovery timetable by a month and now plans to resume normal operations by Oct. 1, according to a Japanese news report. Toyota had narrowed its list of at-risk parts to 30 from more than 1,200 originally disrupted by the March 11 earthquake. But procurement officials at the world’s largest automaker now say those remaining parts are readily available, Japan’s Kyodo news agency said.
Big pickup trucks are clogging many U.S. dealer lots, causing headaches for General Motors Co and other automakers, and raising concerns about price wars and lower profits later in the year. What makes analysts and industry officials most nervous is whether the U.S. economy will depress the usual surge in demand in the second-half. If buyers don't show, heftier incentives could result -- especially from GM -- and drag down profits. Higher incentives by GM would force its rivals to respond to keep up, hurting everyone's profits, analysts said.
Ford Motor Co. is taking applications in Louisville, Ky., to add a second shift at the assembly plant that will make the new 2012 Ford Escape. Ford needs 1,800 workers to restore Louisville to a two-shift operation late this year. The current Escape is built in Kansas City by about 2,250 workers on three crews. They will go on lay off early next year while Ford invests $400 million to prepare for a new vehicle to be built there.
A flying car is being exempted from regulatory hurdles, meaning future owners of the vehicle will be able to drive it on public streets, the company behind it recently announced. "Think of it as an airplane that drives, not a car that flies," Anna Mracek Dietrich, the chief operating officer of Terrafugia, the Woburn, Mass.,-based company that is making the Transition roadable aircraft, [said] in an email Thursday. "Once on the ground, the pilot can fold the wings on his Transition with the push of a button, drive home, and park in their garage."