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  • Auto Dealers Fear That Good Times Are Over As Interest Rates Rise
    11 Jun 2018

    For car dealers, a sunny sales outlook at the start of 2018 has been overshadowed by rising interest rates, shrinking customer budgets and cost increases. Their optimism for the next quarter lost 14 points to just 56 on a 100-point scale, according to the Cox Automotive Dealer Sentiment Index.  The report, based on a survey of more than 1,000 independent and franchise car dealers from April 30 to May 14, shows prospective buyers grappling with tight finances despite a Republican tax cut that many sales executives had expected to boost consumer spending. The biggest challenges they re...

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  • Car Dealerships Facing a Dilemma: Get Big or Get Out
    23 Apr 2018

    Car buyers who have been purchasing their cars from the same dealership for generations could see a different kind of for-sale sign the next time they visit. Small to mid-size dealer groups are selling their businesses to car-retail giants or investment firms.  Dealers say that they need to get triple revenue in the next 5 years to offset shrinking margins and increasing competition from companies that did not exist a decade ago. The internet has made the field very tough, by making car prices more transparent for customers and giving them the opportunity to shop around. It has also ...

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  • BMW pokes fun at Audi by placing an unusual billboard
    09 Feb 2018

    In Tunis a local BMW dealer poked fun at his competitor by placing a billboard saying "It's never too late to change your mind." The billboard was placed just a few meters from the dealer center selling various VAG products, including Audis, Porsches and VWs.   As the footnote shows, the billboard was commissioned by Ben Jemâa Motors, an official BMW and Mini dealer in Tunisia. Just a few days later Audi issued a prompt response to BMW’s passive-aggressive message. The new billboard starting with a big “LOOOL” at the...

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  • The new tax reform could force some dealerships in Texas to shutter
    29 Nov 2017

    For people who live in such a big state as Texas, driving is more like a way of life. The average Texas motorist logs more than 16,000 miles behind the wheel each year, far more than the average American. Nationally, nearly 1 in 10 new vehicle registrations occurs in the Lone Star State.  The central role cars play in Texas means that policies that impact the automobile industry affect us more than most. The tax reform package being considered by Congress has many benefits — but a major wrinkle in the Senate version could force some dealerships in Texas to shutter. That would d...

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  • Mazda plans to increase sales by adding an SUV to its lineup
    27 Nov 2017

    Four years ago, CEO Masamichi Kogai predicted Mazda would be notching annual U.S. sales of 400,000 cars by now. Instead, it is in a second-straight year of decline, with volume under 300,000 and market share retreating from an erstwhile goal of 2 percent. Now Kogai claims the U.S. resurgence will start in earnest in 2019 and kick into overdrive in 2021 when Mazda adds an all-new crossover designed for and built exclusively in the U.S.  Giving first details of the new nameplate in a Nov. 16 interview, Kogai said it has potential to be the brand's best-seller. He said it would slot...

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