Welcome to another edition of Inside Automotive with Jim Fitzpatrick. Today’s guests are John Connelly, the 2022 Chairman of AIADA and President of Acura of Columbus, alongside Cody Lusk, President and CEO of AIADA. In this segment, the panel discusses John’s new role as Chairman and the status of AIADA’s fight against EV tax credits.
As the end of the legislative session approaches, AIADA is keeping its eye on the union EV tax credits and other matters regarding trade. Lusk says that this is the time when members of Congress are looking to garner last-minute political favor.
Lusk adds that the association is also really excited about the positive things happening in the auto industry.
In regards to electric cars and the shift to electrification, Connelly says car dealers are ready to adapt to anything. Connelly himself went from 200 cars in his inventory down to two due to supply chain disruption. Dealers are ready to sell electric cars, but it is up to the OEMs and the government to decide the timeline.
When does Connelly think that inventory will get back to ‘normal?’ He says that having 200 cars on his lot wasn’t ‘normal.’ A 30-day supply appears to be a good number for dealers. In a year or so, Connelly believes that inventory will come back, but not at the levels seen pre-pandemic.
In terms of the union-only EV tax credits backed by the Biden Administration, Lusk believes that there is a lot of missed opportunity. This provision leaves out import dealers and does not consider all of the opportunities that they bring to the country.
“It seems to me to be so commonsense to include a Honda, Toyota, Mercedes in the conversation,” adds Connelly. “Open up the doors, don’t just focus on one thing.”
These issues and more will be tackled at the upcoming Washington Fly-In this May 24-25 in Washington, D.C. Speakers include former Speaker of the House John Boehner and Erin Kerrigan, Founder, and Managing Director of Kerrigan Advisors. Bob Carter, Toyota Motor North Americas’ executive vice president of sales will also be awarded the 2022 Fritz Hitchcock Advocacy Achievement Award.
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