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Posts Tagged ‘CARS’

TDB Brings You the New York International Auto Show

Speed, power and beauty all converge in NYC.

by on Apr.16, 2014

The New York International Auto Show has called it a wrap for 2014. The show featured dozens of new vehicle introductions as well as the latest in vehicle safety, efficiency and infotainment technologies. The show is a must-attend for the industry’s prominent executives, who lend insight and context to what the vehicles mean to the auto companies and consumers.

The 114th NYIAS is now open to the public as well as the media, and it is still making news. TheDetroitBureau.com is wringing out every last drop of product information and breaking news from the Big Apple. (more…)

TDB Brings You the Chicago Auto Show

New vehicles, technology and concepts.

by on Feb.07, 2014

The Windy City is playing host to the latest set of automotive introductions, new technologies and industry executives.

The 106th Chicago Auto Show features plenty of the latest and greatest in the auto world, and plenty of breaking news. And TheDetroitBureau.com continues to bring you more news and behind-the-scenes reports from the show at McCormick Place.

Here’s our handy guide to our complete coverage. Make sure to keep coming back as we add more!

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NADA Blasts Web Analysis of Clunkers as Flawed

Economist says clunker cost per vehicle is $4,600 not $24,000.

by on Nov.11, 2009

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The analysis is wrong on two main points, Taylor says.

After what is said to be a “thorough review” of the Cash for Clunkers program, the chief economist of the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA), Dr. Paul Taylor, says that the cost of each incremental vehicle sold was around $4,587. Taylor defined incremental as a sale that would not otherwise have occurred without the Clunkers program, formally known as CARS.

His findings bring into serious question the methodology — and ideology– behind the $24,000 estimate publicized by the car-buying web site Edmunds.com.

“It’s really not that hard to determine a credible cost estimate for the Clunkers program,” says Taylor.

“You subtract projected sales from actual sales for July and August when the Clunkers program was operating, and divide the program’s $3 billion by that number.”

Taylor says that, based on sales volume for previous months, a realistic projection of auto sales for July and August would be around 1,600,000 vehicles. Actual sales for those two months totaled 2,253,963. The difference is 653,963. That is the number of incremental sales generated by the Clunkers program. Divide the program’s $3 billion by that number and you get $4,587, the average cost per incremental Clunker sale.

Taylor’s criticism mirrors that of many others, including Mike Jackson, chairman and CEO of AutoNation, Inc, the biggest auto retailer in the U.S.

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White House Calls Out Blog for Faulty Analysis

Latest right wing foray, this time against Clunkers, meets with another aggressive response from the Executive branch.

by on Oct.30, 2009

Council of Economic Advisors Seal

"In other words, all the other cars were being sold on Mars."

When a blog site declared that the CARS program, aka Cash For Clunkers, cost taxpayers $24,000 per vehicle sold and only 125,000 of the sales were incremental, it was too much for the newly aggressive Obama Administration to ignore publicly.

In a witty and number filled response that referred to the publicity seeking site and an analysis by the Council of Economic Advisors, the White House blog asked viewers to decide for themselves.

Not before using rapier wit and a decidedly better written blog post, that is – so if you “live by the sword, you die by the sword” was the signal to all the bloggers out there.

The White House said, “On the same day that we found out that motor vehicle output added 1.7% to economic growth in the third quarter – the largest contribution to quarterly growth in over a decade – Edmunds.com has released a faulty analysis suggesting that the Cash for Clunkers program had no meaningful impact on our economy or on overall auto sales. This is the latest of several critical ‘analyses’ of the Cash for Clunkers program from Edmunds.com, which appear designed to grab headlines and get coverage on cable TV. Like many of their previous attempts, this latest claim doesn’t withstand even basic scrutiny.

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Auto Aftermarket to Decline in Wake of Clunkers

Independents and tire stores to suffer from a loss of business.

by on Oct.06, 2009

The now defunct CARS program, or Cash for Clunkers, requires that engines be disabled at the dealer and then the body shredded within 180s days. With 719,000 vehicles removed from the road, the auto repair business will suffer as an unintended consequence of the trade-in replacement program because it shredded vehicles in their prime repair years.

According to the latest research from the consulting group Frost & Sullivan, the net impact on the repair business will be felt largely in two areas — part sales and lost labor revenue coming from removal of the clunkers vehicles.

CARS Trade-ins

CARS Sales

1 Ford Explorer 4WD Toyota Corolla
2 Ford F-150 Honda Civic
3 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4WD Toyota Camry
4 Ford Explorer Ford Focus
5 Dodge Caravan/Grand Caravan Hyundai Elantra
6 Jeep Cherokee 4WD Nissan Versa
7 Chevrolet Blazer 4WD Toyota Prius
8 Chevrolet C1500 Honda Accord
9 Ford F-150 4WD Honda Fit
10 Ford Windstar Ford Escape
Source: Frost & Sullivan

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Dealers Offer Post Clunkers Stimulus Programs

If you were shut out of CARS but are still considering new wheels, there are other options worth looking at.

by on Aug.21, 2009

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It is worth shopping around now even though the curtain has dropped on Cash for Clunkers.

As the Car Allowance Rebate System (CARS) or “cash for clunkers” program winds down this Monday, automotive retailers and manufacturers are attempting to keep the sales momentum going by offering a variety of incentives to keep showroom traffic flowing and the Clunkers sales increases going.

This, natural response from car dealers and makers who — however briefly — are seeing projected retail sales in August rise above the one million mark for the first time in two years, offers prospective buyers excluded from the taxpayer-financed rebate program a chance to still save money on a new or used vehicle. It is worth shopping around now even though the curtain has dropped on Clunkers.

In the interest of honest disclosure, we here at The Detroit Bureau are biased – we do not think that car dealers are evil incarnate as they are frequently portrayed by more, well, mainstream media. We believe that promoting new vehicle sales is good for the economy, good for air quality, and about the only short-term way out of the Great Recession we have been enduring for far too long. The good dealers clearly lay out the deal for a customer and give them time to comparison shop.

We also think that pumping billions upon billions more taxpayer dollars into AIG or Citibank or their bloated executive bonuses will not help create or sustain jobs. It is clear to us that Clunkers helped the overall economy, perhaps more than any of the other pork that lawmakers over loaded the stimulus bill with. If automakers and dealers now show a little old-fashioned American “yes we can” spirit, we might be on the way to a sustained recovery. In addition, although a subject for another day, since the Federal program was so effective, why is the government ending it now?

One example of such a private “post Clunkers” program now available is at http://www.autostimulusplan.com/, which, to be clear, is not affiliated with CARS. Some of the larger auto retailers in the country are using this web site to promote a dealer-funded rebate program that gives buyers up to $4,500 of additional trade-in value towards the purchase of a new or used vehicle. Better still, unlike Clunkers, which ends Monday, it runs through November.

This latest sales promotion deserves a closer look in my view since is more inclusive than the politically compromised “Clunkers” terms. All trade-ins older than the 2007 model year are eligible regardless of their fuel economy, and consumers can purchase or lease any new or used vehicle with an improved fuel economy of 2 mpg to qualify. This is in contrast to the government program, which excluded trade-ins that got more than 18 mpg, or the purchase of used cars, and eliminated leasing contracts of fewer than five years, among other such restrictions. In addition, Clunkers required some vehicles to get at least four mpg better than the trade-in.

Here is how it works, according to Brian Benstock, General Manager and Vice President at Paragon Auto Group in New York City, one of the largest Honda and Acura dealers in the U.S. and the largest seller of certified pre-owned Hondas and Acuras.

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CARS Program is Clearly an Effective Stimulus!

August sales will likely cross the one million mark for the first time in the past 12 months, just as Clunkers is about to end.

by on Aug.20, 2009

And the Clunkers trade-in new car sales winner is?

And the Clunkers trade-in new car sales winner is?

There’s good news and bad news about the government’s Car Allowance Rebate System (CARS) or “cash for clunkers” program, depending on your point of view.

First, after months of debate that started last January in Congress — as China and European countries went ahead with their own Clunkers programs — the U.S. version officially got under way in late July. CARS immediately increased vehicles sales by at least 250,000 units or more. When the first $1 billion in taxpayer funding evaporated in about a week, Congress took $2 billion from another auto technology program to keep CARS rolling. That cash is now apparently gone, or will be by September.

An announcement could come as early as today that the program’s $3,500 to $4,500 rebates are over, but we’re guessing  that the Obama administration will face the same problem that automakers have historically had with rebates – once cash handouts are in place they are almost impossible to remove as buyers simply wait for the next round of rebates or stay out of the market. We’ll see how this plays out in the depressed economy.

Meanwhile, without question, the program is wildly successful at boosting auto sales. New vehicle retail sales in August are now forecasted to cross the 1-million-unit mark for the first time in the past 12 months, according to J.D. Power and Associates, which gathers real-time transaction data from more than 10,000 dealerships across the United States.

Based on the first 13 selling days of the month, retail sales for the month of August are expected to come in at slightly more than 1 million units, up nearly 2% from one year ago. This marks the first increase in retail sales volume since June of 2007.

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Final July Sales Results Mixed. Market Declines 12%

The SAAR at 11.2 million is the highest since last November because of CARS, but offshore makers appear to benefit most.

by on Aug.04, 2009

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

Helped by the hefty infusion of government money into the marketplace, and a corresponding increase in showroom traffic, as well as additional manufacture rebates, the seasonally adjusted annual selling rate (SAAR) topped ten million for the first time this year.

“Sales may still be down 12% from a year ago, but they’re up 16% from June,” said American International Automobile Dealer Association President Cody Lusk. “Cash for Clunkers is a stimulus plan that works. Dealers now look to Congress to keep the momentum going by allocating additional funds to the program.”

According to numbers from AutoData Corporation, offshore brands sold 562,988 vehicles in July, up from 469,713 in June, but down from 650,887 in July 2008. Asian brands accounted for 48.7% percent of the market, up from 45.8% in June 2009. Europeans had a 7.8% market share, down from 8.8%. Domestic brands finished the month with 43.6% of the market.

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General Motors July Sales Down 19% as Company Struggles to Recover. Market off only 12%

Data indicate a replay of the first fuel crisis as Korean and Japanese makes benefitted more from "Cash for Clunkers."

by on Aug.03, 2009

While still challenging, the market is firming and GM sales are still tracking ahead of what we projected in our reinvention plan," said Mark LaNeve, vice president, U.S. sales.

"While still challenging, the market is firming and GM sales are still tracking ahead of what we projected in our reinvention plan," said Mark LaNeve.

General Motors Company reported July sales of 189,443 vehicles this afternoon,  which was down 19% from the year earlier period. The overall market only declined 12%, based on numbers from AutoData Corporation.

However, GM sales executives, ever optimistic, were quick to point out that July month-over-month retail sales increased by 12% compared to June, based on its four remaining “core” brands, Chevrolet, GMC, Buick and Cadillac.

Still, the company struggled in the marketplace as its model mix of gas guzzling, body on frame SUVs and pickup trucks were shunned by consumers who clearly were shifting to cars and compact cross-over vehicles and pickup trucks. While GM, at a retail level, held its own in these areas where it competes, its model mix remains rooted in a past of cheap gasoline and real-estate boom times that are now just memories.

Part of the drop was also caused by a drastic decline in fleet sales of 47%, which is partly deliberate on GM’s part and part happenstance, as fleet orders stalled while customers waited out the bankruptcy hearings. Based on preliminary data, GM might now be as low as 4th in daily rental fleet sales year-to-date, having ceded the market to Hyundai/Kia, Ford and Toyota. Overall, the GM July total, when compared with a stronger July last year and much lower fleet sales this year, was down 19% compared with a year ago. Retail sales were down 9%.

When compared with June’s retail performance, there were several product highlights in GM’s core brands to note, according to Mark LaNeve, vice president, U.S. sales.

  • Chevrolet Aveo, Cobalt, Impala and Malibu contributed to a Chevrolet car retail increase of 8%.
  • Chevrolet truck sales increased 27%, led by increases by Silverado, Suburban, Avalanche, Colorado, HHR and Equinox.
  • GMC sales increased 8%, led by Sierra, Canyon and Yukon XL.

“Assuming the Cash-For-Clunkers program stays in place, we look to continue this positive momentum in August,” LaNeve said. “We offer twice as many vehicles that qualify for the Cash-For-Clunkers program than any other manufacturer, vehicles such as Chevrolet Aveo, Cobalt, Malibu, HHR, Silverado and GMC Sierra. Additionally, we have the best selection of crossovers in the industry with Chevrolet Traverse, GMC Acadia, Buick Enclave, and the all-new GMC Terrain, Chevrolet Equinox and Cadillac SRX. Clearly, GM dealers have the cars and trucks that customers demand.”

A total of 1,487 GM hybrid vehicles were delivered in the month. So far, in 2009, GM has delivered 9,836 hybrid vehicles.

A great debate is raging over the CARS program, aka Clunkers. Aside from the big shift to cars and crossovers, the question remains how much steam does the program have? Since dealers were able to take orders from the first of July, but could not start reporting sales until the 24th of July, there was a great rush at the end of the month, which might not be sustainable as the number of eligible trade-ins dwindles, coupled with the lack of credit-worthiness of their owners.

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House Approves Another $2 Billion in Clunkers Cash

Buyers drain initial $1 billion in less than a week.

by on Jul.31, 2009

As many as a quarter million Clunkers could be crushed under the CARS program - even more if the Senate signs on to a $2 billion expansion of the Cash-for-Clunkers program.

As many as a quarter million Clunkers could be crushed under the CARS program - even more if the Senate signs on to a $2 billion expansion of the Cash-for-Clunkers program.

If there’s a chance it’s broke, fix it.  That seems to be the preemptive mantra of federal lawmakers, responding to word that the Cash-for-Clunkers program is ready to run out of gas, or, more accurately, cash.

The program, conceived as a way to kick-start the sluggish American automotive market, was passed by Congress, in June, though it only formally went into operation a week ago.  Officially known as CARS, for Cash Allowance Rebate System, it provided vouchers worth up to $4,500 for those trading in old vehicles for newer, more fuel-efficient models.

Originally intended to run through November, and to help promote the sale of around 250,000 high-mileage models, there are preliminary indications the Clunkers program is far exceeding even the most optimistic expectations.  Already, the CARS fund has issued vouchers to about 96,000 motorists, but with overloaded dealers struggling to fill in the paperwork, observers now believe that the $1 billion set aside by Congress may already have been exceeded.

High-mileage insight!

High-mileage insight!

“My showroom is packed,” said dealer Earl Stewart, of Earl Stewart Toyota, in Riviera Beach, Florida.  He added he is “really concerned” that he may not be able to complete sales with 61 new customers if, in fact, CARS has run out of cash.

Dealer Stewart isn’t the only one worrying.  In a Friday afternoon meeting with reporters, Pres. Barack Obama noted that the Clunkers program has “succeeded well beyond our expectations and all expectations,” but warned that there “legitimate concerns funding in this program may soon go out.”

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