CBT automotive newscast: September 29, 2020

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Today’s Featured Interview:

NADA Vice Chairman Paul Walser reflects on COVID-19 challenges and looks ahead to 2021
With 26 dealerships, Walser Automotive Group is the 56th largest auto dealer in the country. The group’s leadership shifted in 2017 as Paul Walser, then CEO, became Chairman of the group. Walser went on to serve as National Automobile Dealers Association‘s industry relations committee chairman working alongside franchised dealers to address issues and concerns of members across the nation. In February, Walser took over as Vice Chairman, which positions him to become Chairman of NADA in 2021. Today, we speak to him about the current state of the auto industry and NADA’s plans moving forward. Watch the full segment here.

Top Headlines:

BMW was fined $18 million by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for inflating U.S. sales results. The SEC accused the German automaker of inflating its U.S. sales results while it also raised close to $18 billion from investors in corporate bond offerings. BMW manipulated the sales figures to help narrow the difference between the actual results and the German automaker’s internal forecasts. BMW officials also noted that the deal with the SEC didn’t conclude that the automaker engaged in intentional misconduct.

Despite the uncertainty brought by COVID-19, Volvo Cars announced that it expects to hit its forecast of roughly flat sales year-over-year in the second half of 2020. The Swedish carmaker is coming off six straight years of setting annual sales records. While the company was hit hard in the early stages of the pandemic, Volvo has recovered nicely in recent months due to strong sales in China and the United States.

Daimler is planning to repurpose engine and transmission plants as the company turns its focus to EV production. The company plans to revamp operations in its Berlin and Stuttgart factories to meet the demand of EVs as the company expects traditional combustion engines will decrease in the coming years. As the company continues making changes to keep up with the industry push towards EVs, many jobs could be at risk. Labor officials recently informed employees that the company plans to cut 4,000 jobs by 2025.

News Stories & Opinion:

tariffsAuto industry leaders sue US over Chinese import tariffs
Lawsuits have been filed with the Court of International Trade by four carmakers to recoup reimbursement for duties paid on car parts imported from China. The news story from has been reported by several news outlets worldwide including BBC, The Guardian, and Industry Leaders Magazine, again portraying the Trump tariffs in a negative light. Read More

FacebookFacebook seeks to optimize mobile shopping through new automotive ad initiative
According to J.D. Power, 53% of automotive internet shoppers use a mobile device to gain information about automobiles. The world of automotive research is changing for consumers, as potential car buyers have the option to visit third-party inventory sites or dealership pages to find their next vehicle on a smartphone. However, another platform is emerging to put cars in front of consumers on mobile phones: Facebook. According to Statista, Facebook has over 2.6 billion monthly active users as of the second quarter of 2020. This is one of—if not the most massive—social media audience for businesses in all industries to pursue. 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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