CBT Automotive Newscast: July 20, 2020

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Today’s Featured Interview:

The right message goes a long way with consumers. Bobby Sight, operations director at Rob Sight Ford, knew that the messaging behind their marketing played a big role in their success during COVID-19. We caught up with Bobby to talk about the message in marketing and proper advertising strategies. Watch the full-length interview here.

Top Headlines: 

If you love what you drive, why make a change? That seems to be the approach of most Subaru and Lexus drivers. The two brands ranked the highest in the 2020 J.D. Power Automotive Brand Loyalty Study. The study found that 60.5 percent of Subaru owners purchase another Subaru when it’s time to buy or lease again. Lexus topped the luxury chart with a loyalty rate of 48 percent. You can read more about this story and see the entire study list here.

Winning loyalty is easier said than done, and the same could be said of automakers achieving sales goals in the midst of a national pandemic. Kelley Blue Book reported that only three brands have held year-over-year deficits of fewer than 10 percent in 2020. Those were Tesla with a 2.6 percent drop, Mazda with a 7 percent drop, and Lincoln with a drop of 8 percent.

It appears that one auto retailer hampered by COVID-19 is on its way back up. Penske Automotive Group said that U.S. vehicle sales improved from May to June. The nation’s second-largest new-vehicle retailer expects to post a profit when second-quarter results are released on July 29th.

The health of auto workers continues to be a point of emphasis for the industry as production picks back up. Manufacturing numbers increased over 7 percent in June according to data from the Federal Reserve. However, factories must continue enforcing protocols implemented by the CDC if production numbers are to continue improving.

News Stories & Opinion:

automotive newscastAs CVS and Walmart Make Masks Mandatory, Should Dealers Follow Suit?
Effective July 20th, CVS Health will require that all customers wear face masks while shopping in their stores nationwide. Walmart has also announced that all their shoppers in the United States will also be required to wear masks while in the store. A statement from CVS COO Jon Roberts says, “With the recent spike in COVID-19 infections, we’re joining others in taking the next step and requiring all customers to wear face coverings when entering any of our stores throughout the country effective Monday, July 20. Read More

automotive newscastTime, A Major Reason for Higher PRU During COVID-19
Way back in March when COVID-19 shutdowns rolled across the US (seems like a long time ago, doesn’t it?) dealerships were one of the businesses that took an immediate hit. Showrooms and lots emptied and either transitioned to online sales or closed altogether. It was like a bad 80’s science fiction movie. Society just seemed to stop. Then something funny happened. The stats from F&I in particular for May showed a higher average income per retail unit (PRU) than BEFORE the shutdowns occurred. How did that happen? What is this all about? Read More


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

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