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CBT Automotive Newscast: August 25, 2020

Today’s Featured Interview:

Author and Former MLB Player Mike Robbins on Inspiring Your Team to Win
The retail automotive industry can sometimes be a rough business, from dealing with sales to management. How are you navigating? How do you keep not only yourself, but also a team energized and engaged? Here to talk about some things you can incorporate is Mike Robbins, Speaker, Coach and Author of 5 books, his latest titled We’re All in this Together: Creating a Team Culture of High Performance, Trust, and Belonging. Watch the full segment here.

Top Headlines:

Nicholas Speeks, CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA, is undergoing a leave of absence. Automotive News reported the departure late Friday, and while there’s no clear indication on what prompted the move, Speeks is not expected to return as CEO. Speeks took over the position last fall and has helped navigate MB through the COVID-19 pandemic. The company announced that Drew Slaven, Mercedes-Benz USA vice president of marketing, would be taking over as CEO on an interim basis.

AutoNation’s stock is up since its last earnings report at the end of second quarter. Shares for the auto retailer are up 10.6% in that time frame, outperforming the S&P 500. Despite the financial impact of COVID-19, AutoNation is not pulling back on store expansion with plans to add at least 20 pre-owned vehicle stores over the next three years.

Tesla is once again in the market for real estate. The EV maker announced that it is currently looking to expand service centers in the northeast region of the country. Tesla president of automotive Jerome Guillen, wrote on LinkedIn that the company is currently looking for a real estate manager for the northeast and openly welcomed applications. While the company has enjoyed a tremendous amount of success on the west coast, CEO Elon Musk says expanding service centers and the supercharger network into new regions is the best way to bring in new customers.

Many iconic nameplates are driving off into the sunset at the end of 2020. As of today, there are 18 different models that won’t be returning at the beginning of 2021. Some of the most iconic departures include the Chevy Impala, Chevy Sonic, Dodge Grand Caravan, Dodge Journey, Honda Fit, and the Ford Fusion.

News Stories & Opinion:

Trump vs Biden: What Are their Plans for the Auto Industry?
The American election is coming on November 3rd, just ten weeks away, and polls are very close between the Trump-Biden camps, according to CNN’s tracking data. Without a doubt, the auto industry can expect very different effects depending on who earns the public’s trust and occupies the Oval Office for the next four-year term. Read More

Luxury Vehicle Sales Expected to Rebound from Depression
The coronavirus pandemic has not been beneficial to most industries, and this definitely includes the auto industry. According to Cox Automotive, the Kelley Blue Book Brand Watch™ reported that for Q2 2020, luxury vehicle sales dropped 35% and hit their lowest level in the past two years. The past couple of years had already seen a decline in luxury sales, with just 34% of consumers considering one (down from 39% in Q3 2018). There are various reasons for this, but for starters, lower-priced non-luxury vehicles are starting to be manufactured with technology that was previously only featured in luxury vehicles. Read More

Did you enjoy today’s automotive newscast? Please share your thoughts, comments, or questions regarding this topic with host Jim Fitzpatrick at

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