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Weekly roundup: October auto sales forecasts, UAW labor deals, and EV charging developments

Earlier this week: October, U.S. car sales were projected to rise despite ongoing manufacturing challenges, according to S&P Global Mobility. Labor relations saw a significant development as Ford and the UAW tentatively agreed to end a 41-day strike. On the business front, Hudson Automotive Group is slated to acquire Vic Bailey Automotive, signaling further consolidation among dealerships. Meanwhile, Tesla faces scrutiny from the DOJ concerning its Autopilot technology and other performance claims. In the EV charging realm, Toyota and Lexus announce plans to adopt Tesla’s North American Charging Standard by 2025. Here’s a closer look at these top stories and more headlines to stay on top of this week in automotive industry news.

U.S. car sales are projected to rise in October surpassing last year's total, but analysts are still concerned about the upcoming months.1. October car sales ‘stronger than they appear’ forecasts S&P Global Mobility

Analysts at S&P Global Mobility expect U.S. car sales to rise by the end of October but have expressed concern for the automotive sector should manufacturing and economic headwinds continue further into the fourth quarter. According to S&P Global Mobility’s forecast, U.S. car sales will reach 1.22 million by the end of the month, slightly ahead of last October’s total. This would place the seasonally adjusted annual rate for the period at 15.7 million units, almost unchanged from September and ahead of the 14.7 million seen in October 2022. Read More

On the evening of October 25, Ford and the UAW announced they had reached a “historic” tentative agreement to end a 41-day strike. 
UAW President Shawn Fain & VP of the Ford department Chuck Browning | Image source:

2. UAW and Ford tentatively reach agreement to end 41-day strike

On the evening of October 25, Ford and the United Auto Workers (UAW) union announced they had reached a “historic” tentative agreement to end a 41-day strike targeting the automaker. The deal includes a 25% increase in base pay through April 2028 and will raise the top pay from $32.32 an hour to more than $40 an hour. Starting wages will also increase to more than $28 per hour throughout the contract.  Upon ratification, employees will immediately receive an 11% pay increase. Read More

Hudson Automotive Group has signed an agreement to purchase five storefronts from Vic Bailey Automotive of Spartanburg.
Pictured: Vic Bailey Ford, Spartanburg, South Carolina, Image Source: Vic Bailey Automotive

3. Hudson Automotive Group to acquire Vic Bailey Automotive of Spartanburg

Hudson Automotive Group is set to acquire South Carolina dealership group Vic Bailey Automotive. According to a press release, the two businesses have already signed an agreement, with a purchase date set in early December. The transaction includes Vic Bailey Automotive’s five dealerships and one service center. Hudson Automotive Group plans to rename these storefronts as Volkswagen of Spartanburg, Spartanburg Honda, Subaru of Spartanburg, Mazda of Spartanburg and Ford/Lincoln of Spartanburg. The transaction amount and the involvement of any buy-sell advisor were not disclosed in the release. Read More

The U.S. DOJ has issued subpoenas to Tesla as part of the EV maker's ongoing investigation into its autopilot technology, and other claims. 
The interior of a Tesla Model S car

4. DOJ issues subpoena to Tesla for ongoing Autopilot investigations

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has issued subpoenas to Tesla as part of the EV maker’s ongoing investigation into its driving range, autopilot technology, and performance claims. In August, the Wall Street Journal revealed that federal prosecutors were also investigating Tesla’s vehicle performance claims and the company’s use of finances for a secret project. In addition, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has been investigating the effectiveness of Tesla’s autopilot after discovering more than a dozen incidents in which Tesla vehicles collided with stationary emergency vehicles. Read More

Toyota and Lexus have reached a deal with Tesla to make NACS-compatible models, expanding electric vehicle charging accessibility.5. Toyota and Lexus to adopt Tesla’s EV charging standard by 2025

Toyota and its subsidiary Lexus have signed a deal with Tesla to adopt the North American Charging Standard (NACS), joining a growing list of major automakers taking action to improve electric vehicle charging accessibility. The NACS was developed by Tesla for its Supercharger network, comprised of more than 12,000 stations across North America. Although manufacturers, lawmakers and electric vehicle charging providers have continued to support the Combined Charging System, developed independently by experts at SAE International and the European Automobile Manufacturers Association, nearly all prominent car brands (excluding Stellantis and Volkswagen) have announced plans to integrate the NACS into future electric vehicle models. Read More

Tyson Jominy joins CBT Now to discuss the UAW strike and what dealers should expect to see from fourth quarter auto sales.6. How will the UAW strike affect Q4 auto sales? — Tyson Jominy | J.D. Power

Faced with rising inflation, high interest rates and a historical United Auto Workers (UAW) strike, dealers are in for a complex fourth quarter. With the holiday season only weeks away, now is the time for retailers to make preparations that ensure continued success not just for the next two months but for 2024 as well. On this episode of CBT Now, host Jim Fitzpatrick is joined by Tyson Jominy, vice president of data and analytics at J.D. Power. Watch Here

Evelyn Cardenas, President and CEO of CFADA joins us on Inside Automotive to tell us about the association's EV initiatives.7. How the CFADA is paving the way for EV adoption – Evelyn Cardenas | Pres. & CEO

As EVs become more prevalent on the roadways, it’s essential for dealerships to understand the opportunities associated with maintenance. Evelyn Cardenas, President and CEO of the Central Florida Automobile Dealers Association, joined us on Inside Automotive to tell us about her association’s EV initiatives. Watch Here

Brian Pasch continues his discussion on Google Analytics 4, this time examining the new ways dealers can track and identify opportunities.8. Tracking events on your dealership website with Google Analytics 4 — Brian Pasch

Earlier this year, Google launched Google Analytics 4, discarding outdated features and processes in favor of modern tools that better align with today’s internet shoppers. However, this new platform, which completely replaces the previous iteration, can be difficult for dealers to navigate, especially if they are just now entering the world of digital marketing. On this episode of Auto Marketing Now, host Brian Pasch discusses the main differences between Google Analytics 3 and Google Analytics 4 and offers useful advice to help dealers set up their new accounts without losing important data. Watch Here

Sean Gardner joins Inside Automotive to discuss the importance of write-ups and demos and why sales teams are forgetting these crucial steps.9. 2 crucial steps sales teams have forgotten — Sean Gardner | Joe Verde Group

Dealers must regularly audit and improve the skills of their sales teams to ensure that their businesses continue to grow regardless of the market’s overall performance. But, after the retail automotive sector’s relaxed pace during the COVID pandemic, many sales professionals have fallen out of practice and are now prone to wasting valuable time through ineffective tactics. On this episode of Inside Automotive, host Jim Fitzpatrick is joined by Sean Gardner, instructor and sales trainer at the Joe Verde Group. Watch Here

10. The biggest takeaways from dealership and OEM third-quarter reports — Kevin Tynan | Bloomberg Intelligence

Third-quarter reports from the big dealership groups and automakers are in, giving analysts insight into the impact of the ongoing United Auto Workers strike and what the upcoming months have in store for the car business. Understanding the state of affairs will be key to forming successful strategies for 2024 and beyond. On this episode of Inside Automotive, host Jim Fitzpatrick is joined by Kevin Tynan, senior automotive analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence. Watch Here

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Anna Delvillar
Anna Delvillar
Anna is the editorial and programming coordinator at CBT News. She graduated with a B.A. in English Composition from Georgia State University. She is an enthusiastic and skilled media professional with high-caliber communication skills, and has five years of experience performing multimedia writing, editing, and publishing for automotive, tech, and small business media.

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