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CBT automotive newscast: November 18, 2021

Inside Automotive:

RecovrKudelski IoT SVP Hardy Schmidbauer discusses the benefits of having vehicle theft prevention technology at the dealership
For those who are unfamiliar, RecovR is a two-in-one lot management and theft recovery solution by Kudelski IoT, a leading global IoT technology provider and unit of the Kudelski Group. With a proven team of more than 100 experienced professionals, Recover benefits from the Kudelski Group’s 70 years of innovation. RecovR has no upfront costs, enables dealerships to sell cars faster, and offers car buyers a valuable purchase add-on that captures incremental F&I revenue. On today’s show, we’re pleased to welcome Hardy Schmidbauer, Senior Vice President at Kudelski IoT and General Manager at RecovR. Watch the complete segment here.


EV maker, Rivian is now the third most valuable carmaker in the world. With its value of over $140 billion, the U.S. company has no sales and no revenue. Rivian’s shares have risen 67% from its IPO price of $78. According to an SEC filing, Rivian only made its first truck deliveries two months ago, and the majority were employees. The company is forecasted to make no more than $1 million in revenue for Q3.

Elon Musk, Tesla’s CEO has sold an additional $973 million of his shares to pay his taxes and to keep the commitments he made to his Twitter community. SEC filings showed, Musk purchased 2.1 million shares worth $2.2 billion at Tuesday’s closing price and sold 934,091 for $973 million to pay taxes. In the past week, Musk sold about 8.2 million Tesla shares for about $8.8 billion.

Lithia Motors has added to its portfolio with the purchase of Audi Fort Lauderdale and Audi Coral Spring. The two dealerships will add a predicted $275 million to Lithia’s annual revenue. With the deal, Lithia now has 12 stores in Florida. So far this year, Lithia has purchased dealerships representing $6.5 billion in annual profit.

Residents living near the new Jeep assembly plant in Detroit have filed a civil rights complaint with the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy alleging racial discrimination over permits for the Stellantis facility. The residents argue that the agency failed to conduct a cumulative impact analysis prior to approving its permit. They say it’s discrimination based on race, color, and national origin and is a violation of federal law. EGLE is reviewing the complaint and didn’t have further comment on it. Stellantis declined to comment.

In more Stellantis news, the automaker has recalled almost 250,000 of their heavy-duty Ram diesel trucks worldwide due to an issue with the fuel pumps that may cause the vehicles to stall or prevent them from starting. The affected vehicles are the 2019 and 2020 Ram 2500 and 3500 heavy-duty pickups, and the Ram 3500, 4500, and 5500 cab trucks. Fuel pumps on the affected vehicles will be replaced and the software will be updated. Dealers and truck owners will be notified on or around January 1.

News & Opinion:

onlineWhere to focus the online journey for pickup truck buyers
Trucks are one of the most profitable and desirable segments in recent years, and their popularity has continued to attract a more diverse set of shoppers. While having inventory might be the best way to capture buyers in this segment right now, the competition is fierce. Certain aspects of the online experience can either help or hurt your chances of closing the deal. Quantcast’s October 2021 US Automotive Insights report titled “Pickup the Competition” identifies the path to purchase for truck buyers today, and the results can help dealers understand what to expect between different types of shoppers and where to put their resources online. Read more

talentHR is broken – Here’s how to fix it, and hire the right talent
The biggest challenge facing shorthanded employers right now is simply talent to fill open roles. Just by sheer numbers, there are more open roles out there across all industries than there are people actively looking to fill them. This is due to a number of factors. People who lost their jobs at the onset of the pandemic are either choosing not to return to work (maybe they’re pursuing childcare full time or they’ve retired early) or they’re considering other career paths that better meet their needs when it comes to salary, benefits, flexibility, and culture. Read more

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