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Category Archives for "Auto News"

Sunday service hours can be a boon

The service department at Olathe Toyota in Olathe, Kan., is open on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It’s among only 7 percent of U.S. dealerships that provide full Sunday service, the National Automobile Dealers Association reports.It hasn’t always been easy to assign 13 shop employees to work on Sunday, concedes Tom Blackman, Olathe […]

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Dealers must value
skills for new world

TO THE EDITOR:I have been a business development director and/or manager for numerous large companies in South Florida. Most dealerships know this is necessary, yet they are reluctant to pay for the work. If you are going to embrace the new way of doing business, you need to be prepared to invest in the people […]

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Techs’ strike in Chicago highlights work-force issues affecting all dealerships

For seven weeks over the summer, 2,000 service technicians went on strike at 129 new-vehicle dealerships in the Chicago area, seeking better pay and working conditions.One dealer estimates the walkout cost his store hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost service revenue. Another calls the strike “unnecessary … devastating” and says it left him “bitter.”Yet […]

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Let’s talk about sexism

There’s sexism in the traditionally male-dominated auto industry. Not exactly a breaking news story.So did we really need to devote a dozen pages of our newspaper to the topic?Turns out, the answer is a resounding yes. Because while all levels of the auto industry are struggling to recruit and retain talented women, the efforts to […]

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In digital age, paper contracts endure

As the auto industry inches closer to online transactions, one essential piece of the process is missing for some dealerships: electronic contracting.Despite the cost savings and operational efficiencies that e-contracting can provide, going digital can be a worrisome notion for dealership employees who have been handling deals the same way for decades. Small-town banks and […]

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Two-tone cars are back in vogue

PARIS — Two-tone paint jobs, last seen hanging out at drive-ins across the U.S. in the 1950s, are back, this time with a distinct European flair.In the past several years, about 20 models with the feature, largely with bodies and roofs in different colors, have hit showrooms across Europe, with more poised to come. So […]

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Old Chrysler hand still seethes over dealer cuts

DETROIT — Tom Pappert is nearly two decades removed from the pressures of monthly sales goals and the stress of product meetings.He picks at a salad and a cup of mushroom barley soup at the corner table at one of metro Detroit’s most exclusive country clubs while a string of familiar passers-by wave and smile […]

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Turf battle: Dealer’s lawsuit says his territory is too big

One of Land Rover’s longtime dealers is suing Jaguar Land Rover North America, claiming its assigned territory is so large it can’t meet its factory sales objectives and earn quarterly bonus payouts worth tens of thousands of dollars.The lawsuit comes at an unusual time for the smooth-sailing JLR.Retailer beefs with manufacturers often go to court […]

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For Vinnie Johnson, a new game beckons

Vinnie Johnson, the celebrated sixth man for the Detroit Pistons teams that won NBA championships in 1989 and 1990, was nicknamed the “Microwave” for his ability to come off the bench and instantly heat up the offense.He’s doing it again.Johnson’s suburban Detroit auto parts business, Piston Group, last year paid a reported $175 million to […]

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