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CBT automotive newscast: April 15, 2021

Featured Interview:

Dealers - Victor AntonioHow car dealers can improve their sales strategies through modern retailing – Victor Antonio
Digital retailing and virtual engagements are on the rise after the shutdowns associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. For this reason, car dealers are examining changes in selling strategies related to the modern virtual environment. Today on the show, Victor Antonio discusses effective selling strategies associated with remote operations. Antonio holds the title of Sales Trainer and Speaker at Sellinger Group. Watch the full segment here.

Top Headlines:

General Motors is preparing to restart production at several plants. Next week, the automaker will end its work stoppage at its plant in Spring Hill, Tennessee. GM also plans to restart production of the Chevrolet Blazer in Mexico. According to a GM spokesperson, the automaker’s supply chain continues to make strides to mitigate the near-term impacts of the semiconductor crisis.

Ford Motor Company is set to launch its hands-free driving technology known as “BlueCruise”. The new tech will be available in the 2021 Ford F-150 and Mustang Mach-E models equipped with the ford Co-pilot360 Active 2.0 package. BlueCruise will cost car buyers an additional $600 when it’s installed in the third quarter of this year. The hands-free system is expected to compete with Tesla’s autopilot and General Motors Super Cruise.

Strong sales in march brought inventory levels to their lowest level in several months. According to vAuto inventory data, the days’ supply of new vehicles fell to 59 at the end of March. The lowest level since October 2020. Inventory of new non-luxury vehicles was at 58 days’ supply, down from 78 at the end of February, and luxury days’ supply was at 60, down from 79 in the prior month.

Low inventory of new vehicles led to a record-breaking month in the certified pre-owned market. According to Cox Automotive, a record 286,061 CPO units were sold, beating the last record set in March of 2019. CPO sales increased 80% year over year in March and 36% compared to February. has appointed Jenell Ross to its Board of Directors. Ross has over 28 years of auto industry experience, including 11 years as President of Bob Ross Auto Group, a Buick-GMC and Mercedes-Benz dealership based in Ohio. Ross previously served as chair of the American International Automobile Dealers Association where she was the first minority and second female to lead the organization.

News & Opinion:

Jenell RossJenell Ross to join CARS Board of Directors has announced that Jenell Ross will join Jill Greenthal and Jerri Devard on its 11-person board of directors. Ross has 28 years of leadership experience in the auto industry. She has been President of Bob Ross Auto Group, a family-owned, Ohio-based Buick-GMC and Mercedes-Benz dealership. Bob Ross Auto Group was the first African American-owned Mercedes-Benz dealer in the U.S. and today Ross is the only second-generation African American female auto dealer in the country. Read more

rubberShortage of natural rubber compounds vehicle production concerns
Dealers could once again be facing inventory shortages in both the sales and parts departments as the supply of natural rubber is stretched thin. Between below-average harvesting levels, stockpiling in China, and disruptions in shipping, the raw materials needed to produce crucial automotive components are in short supply. Rubber plantations in Sri Lanka, one of the world’s leading producers of natural rubber, have been plagued by a leaf disease known as Pestalotiopsis in their fall season. In a statement, the Colombo Rubber Traders’ Association said, “High humidity favors the spread of the disease causing defoliation and a considerable yield loss and ultimately the death of the tree. Read more

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CBT News
CBT News
For over 11 years, CBT News has been informing and helping automotive retail professionals grow their businesses and thrive in their careers through an awarding-winning, on-demand streaming platform. With exclusive interviews featuring the biggest names in the industry, daily newscasts, up-to-date market data, and exclusive articles covering the latest trends, CBT News is your #1 source for auto industry news and content.

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