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New Car Sales Expected to Remain Steady in August

Fiat Chrysler's sales streak may come to an end.

by on Aug.27, 2015

Some observers are predicting FCA's five-year streak of month-over-month sales increases may come to an end in August.

August auto sales may be mirroring the many of the world’s economies these days: uncertain. Predictions about the final tally run from sales being down to sales being up. Much like investors wondering what to do in the tumultuous stock markets these days, the answer depends upon who you ask.

Kelly Blue Book expects sales to decline 4% year-over-year due to the exclusion of Labor Day weekend in this month’s sales results. If true, the slide could put Fiat Chrysler’s long string of monthly sales increases, which has extended for more than five years, at risk, according to KBB.

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On the other hand, TrueCar, the car buying service, suggests sales could wind up rising by 4% and FCA U.S.’s impressive streak of increases is safe. (more…)

New Car Sales Predicted to Top 17 Million in the US in 2015

Next year expected to hit new highs for new and used vehicle sales.

by on Dec.22, 2014

TrueCar expects the luxury vehicle segment to experience the largest sales growth in 2015.

A catalytic combination of an improving economy and lower gas prices will result in record results for the auto industry in 2015.

TrueCar, the online car-selling and data service, is predicting that new vehicle sales will exceed 17 million units next year and total sales will be more than 55.7 million units.

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“We see a convergence of favorable economic circumstances pushing auto demand up to pre-recession levels, including continued gains in the job market, the best consumer sentiment in eight years and low fuel prices,” said John Krafcik, president of TrueCar. (more…)

New Car Sales Looking Strong in December

Heavy incentives, advertising drawing buyers to showrooms.

by on Dec.19, 2014

Low gas prices are helping to drive sales of full-size pickups like the Ford F-150, which is helping the year end on a high note.

With manufacturers pouring money into advertising, marketing and incentives this month, new car sales are expected to finish the year on a high note when the final numbers are totaled up in early January.

TrueCar, Inc., the negotiation-free car buying and selling platform, now expects December 2014 auto sales will show healthy year-over-year growth with a volume increase of as much as 11% and a 16.6 million SAAR, a pace not seen since before the great recession.

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Low fuel prices, sustained economic growth and U.S. consumers’ appetite for pickups, utility vehicles and luxury models have buoyed sales this year, up an estimated 5.8% to 16.5 million cars and trucks from last year’s 15.6 million. That demand has also resulted in higher transaction prices and revenue gains for automakers, according to True Car analysts. (more…)

Trucks, SUVs Dominating $50,000 Price Point

TrueCar says pickups, utes moving into the luxury territory.

by on Dec.11, 2014

Ford's F-150 tops the list of vehicles sold at a price topping $50,000 this year.

The perception of what constitutes a “luxury vehicle” may be changing, especially if price is the top factor, according to TrueCar, Inc.

The car selling service says that when it comes to sales of vehicles with prices exceeding $50,000 most would think German luxury brands like BMW and Mercedes-Benz would hold the top spots, but it’s just not so.

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“Conventional wisdom says German premium brands would dominate the list of top-selling vehicles over $50,000,” said John Krafcik, president of TrueCar. “The reality is that this price segment of the market is dominated by American pickups and SUVs sold through non-premium brand dealers.” (more…)

TrueCar’s Krafcik Suggests VW, Fiat Chrysler Merge

by on Nov.05, 2014

TrueCar's John Krafcik today suggested that a merger between VW and Fiat Chrysler would produce a "well-balanced" and "highly profitable" carmaker.

A new analysis from TrueCar suggests that Fiat Chrysler and Volkswagen are a natural fit for each other, if they were to partner up.

TrueCar President John Krafcik said during an appearance at the Automotive Press Association in Detroit today that if the two companies were to merge, it would be “well-balanced” and “highly profitable.”

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“This is an absolutely brilliant combination,” Krafcik said. “For sure, these two companies have a natural attraction to each other.” (more…)

TrueCar Exploring Used-Car Market Options

Fresh off IPO, company developing new service.

by on May.19, 2014

John Krafcik, TrueCar's new president, said the company is working on new service to buy and sell used cars.

With the money from its initial public offering of stock in the bank, TrueCar plans to move quickly to use its resources to expand its reach.

John Krafcik, TrueCar’s new president, said one of the areas in which it will be putting a substantial effort is a new service that would make it easier to sell used vehicles.

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“We’re not a shopping site; we’re a buying (site),” noted Krafcik. “Once you’ve made the decision you want to buy a Sonata, we help you find it at a competitive price.” (more…)

TrueCar IPO Falls Short of Expectations -Then Rebounds

After dropping price, traders quickly drive shares back up.

by on May.16, 2014

John Krafcik, third from left, TrueCar president, and Scott Painter, founder and CEO of TrueCar, right of Krafcik, celebrate the its debut on the NASDAQ.

With some of the fizz going out of internet stock in recent weeks, the initial public offering of stock by auto buying service TrueCar fell short of its own, cautious expectations as it began its first day of trading — but then quickly rebounded.

Initially expected to command between $12 and $14 per share when shares began trading today, they actually wound up launching under the NASDAQ symbol “TRUE” at a much more modest $9.00. Considering the nearly 8 million shares of common stock TrueCar offered, it will have raised about $70 million, down from initial expectations of somewhere around $100 million.

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The firm expects to use the cash it did raise for expanding its business operations and possibly making additional acquisitions according to the company’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings. It purchased the influential ALG, the former Automotive Leasing Guide, two years ago.

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Ex-Hyundai CEO Krafcik Named New TrueCar President

Unexpected move comes as Web service prepares for IPO.

by on May.02, 2014

John Krafcik is no longer just a board member at TrueCar, he's added the title of President.

John Krafcik, former Hyundai Motor America President and CEO, has been named the President of TrueCar, the automotive sales and data website that is preparing for a stock offering.

The announcement ends speculation about the future of Krafcik, who left Hyundai in December after the South Korean automaker declined to renew his contract. Because of the talent he demonstrated while leading Hyundai’s American operations through a period of rapid growth, speculation about Krafcik’s future has been intense at times.

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Krafcik himself told TheDetroitBureau.com that he was considering “a number of opportunities” during a brief conversation at the New York Auto Show in April. (more…)

TrueCar Files for IPO as Former Hyundai CEO Krafcik Joins Board

Shopping service looking to raise $125 million.

by on Apr.04, 2014

TrueCar wants cash to grow its operations.

Online automotive shopping site TrueCar.com has announced plans to go public – a significant turnaround for a service that some thought might not survive a series of legal challenges that forced the company to make some major changes to its business model over the last two years.

TrueCar revealed it had filed the necessary paperwork – known as a Form S-1 – with the Securities and Exchange Commission  just a day after it announced that former Hyundai Motor America CEO John Krafcik had joined the company’s board of directors.

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Though the firm’s management could not comment about the IPO due to federal guidelines, the planned stock offering is expected to raise as much as $125 million which would be used to further expand the firm’s aggressive growth plans.  TrueCar previously  raised significant funds through private equity offerings, including a $30 million investment by Vulcan Capital, the investment arm of Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen.

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TrueCar Reinvents Itself

Aiming to keep both customers and dealers happy.

by on Dec.18, 2012

TrueCar's Scott Painter has lost a lot of money -- and weight -- while trying to fix the company's problems.

For a businessman, there are few things worse than having to start all over again – unless it involves losing millions of dollars in the process.

But few in the auto industry have had more experience reinventing themselves than Scott Painter, a serial entrepreneur who has repeatedly come up with concepts aimed at rethinking the way cars are sold. Among the companies to his credit are CarsDirect and TrueCar.

The latter website made waves when it began offering U.S. car buyers the sort of deep, insider pricing information that hadn’t previously been made public, including not only data on what dealers really paid for a vehicle but also the lowest prices that customers were getting away with paying.

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Not surprisingly, that didn’t sit well with retailers who accused TrueCar of violating various strict franchising laws.  Notably, states like Texas and Virginia bar so-called “bird-dogging,” or auto brokering, where a third party steps in to help a customer get a better price.

(more…)