Tag Archive | "Dodge"

Manheim Reschedules Make-A-Wish Car Show


CLARKSVILLE, Ind. — Manheim Louisville has rescheduled its Cruisin’ for Wishes car show and fundraiser for June 13, after the event was rained out on May 16.

The Criusin’ for Wishes car show will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Manheim Louisville. Registration for the car show begins at 9 a.m. and the event is free and open to the public. Proceeds from the show will benefit the Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana chapter of the Make-A-Wish foundation.

More than 100 vehicles are expected for the show with prizes going to the Best in Show winner as well as second and third places. There will also be awards for individual brands including Buick, Dodge, Ford, General Motors, Oldsmobile, Plymouth and Pontiac.  Trophies will be given out at 3 p.m.

The fee to showcase a classic car is $20. To reserve a spot in the show, contact Manheim Louisville’s David Saylor at 812-258-4318.

“Please join us and show off your beautiful car, truck or motorcycle and help children at the same time,” said David Kaflik, general manager of Manheim Louisville. “This fundraiser can really make the difference in the lives of many children and their families.”

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How Dodge’s ‘Double-Up’ Deal Could Affect Used Values


Via Auto Remarketing

IRVINE, Calif. – In light of the Dodge brand’s “Double-Up” program announced Monday, Kelley Blue Book shared some analysis from Eric Ibara, its director of residual value consulting, about what sort of impact this move could have both in terms of marketing as well as future auction volumes and values.

First, the basics of the offer.

Chrysler Group said the Double-Up deal allows eligible customers to lease a 2014 model-year Dodge Charger (excluding SE and SRT models) or Challenger (excluding SRT models) for 12 months and then return to lease a new 2015 Charger or Challenger with the lease payment, provided they follow program rules.

The returning lessee would enter into a 36-month lease with no additional down payment and choose from select 2015 Charger (excluding SE and SRT models) and Challenger (excluding SRT) vehicles. If the customer decides to buy the 2015 model, he or she gets bonus cash of $1,000 towards the purchase. Under the program — which runs through the end of August — customers are required to lease from the same Dodge store for both transactions, lease through Chrysler Capital and follow program rules for eligibility.

KBB’s Ibara believes this promotion will create some much-needed “buzz” around these muscle cars while also shoring up brand retention and possibly hitting two birds with one stone.

“From a marketing standpoint, this is an innovative approach that will create some buzz around both vehicles right now as both cars are down in sales so far this year,” he said. “With the refreshes coming in just a few months, this is a way to lock in customers now to ensure they don’t defect in the meantime. Also, it has the effect of locking in two sales for perhaps the price of one.”

Ibara also looked at the implications on the remarketing side, which seem to be a bit more complicated.

He explained that Enterprise will be taking these cars once the year finishes, but emphasized that these units still have to be remarketed in some fashion.

“Enterprise has a method of selling vehicles directly to dealers, but in theory, this just means the dealers won’t be going to auction to purchase other Chargers and Challengers,” Ibara said. “Unless Dodge cuts back on its rental sales over the next 12 months, there will be additional volume at auction at some point.

“So it all comes down to how many customers take this offer,” he continued. “Currently, the 2013 model year Charger has a 33-percent rental penetration (fairly high for a full-size sedan) and the Challenger is at 22 percent (about in line with the others in this segment).

“A slight volume increase will likely not affect values much, but a successful program could easily increase the volume at auction by 50 percent or more. Unless Dodge has a program in place to absorb the greater volume at auction, values could be softer down the road.”

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Ford, Chevy and Toyota Lead the Way in Edmunds.com’s Inaugural Most Popular Vehicle Awards


Santa Monica, Calif. – Ford, Chevrolet and Toyota are the most decorated brands among a diverse selection of new cars and trucks that earned the 2014 Most Popular on Edmunds.com Awards. The inaugural awards were presented by the car shopping Web site at the 2014 New York International Auto Show.

Ford has the strongest representation of any brand recognized by the Most Popular on Edmunds.com awards, with 10 winning vehicles. Highlights include the Ford F-150, which was named one of the 2014 Most Popular on Large Trucks; and Ford Mustang, which was named one of the 2014 Most Popular on Entry Sport Cars.

Chevy and Toyota each earned seven awards. Highlights include the Chevy Colorado, which was named one of the 2014 Most Popular on Compact Trucks; and the Toyota Camry, which was named one of the 2014 Most Popular on Midsize Sedans.

Acura, Audi, BMW, Cadillac, Dodge, GMC, Honda, Infiniti, Jaguar, Jeep, Kia, Lamborghini, Land Rover, Lexus, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, MINI, Nissan, Porsche and Tesla also were honored in a range of categories.

“Edmunds.com is in a unique position not only to offer independent and trusted reviews of every vehicle on the market, but also to see firsthand which cars and trucks most pique the interest of shoppers on our site,” said Seth Berkowitz, president, Edmunds.com. “By naming these award-winning vehicles, we hope that car shoppers have an easier time evaluating some of the excellent choices available on the market today.”

The 2014 Most Popular on Edmunds.com awards were determined by finding the three models in each of 23 vehicle segments with the highest total monthly car-shopper consideration in calendar year 2013. “Consideration” means the number of unique visitors during a calendar month to the research and inventory pages on Edmunds.com desktop site for each new model.

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CarFinance.com Releases New Loyalty Data


Irvine, Calif. – A new brand loyalty report from CarFinance.com shows that below-prime car buyers are less loyal than the average car buyer, are making practical choices as they re-enter the market and are trading in slightly younger vehicles this year than last. The report lists the top five brands for loyalty and purchase, as well as the most traded-in model years for below-prime car buyers. Based on an analysis of trade-in data from January 2013 to September 2013, the report offers a unique snapshot of the large population of car-buyers who are below prime.

“This report offers one of the industry’s only views of below-prime car-buyer behavior,” said CarFinance.com CEO Jim Landy. “Given that over half of all used, and over one in four new, car loans today go to below-prime consumer, this is data that both automakers and consumers might want to take note of. These buyers, who are getting back on their feet, are contributing to the auto industry recovery, and this report provides a view of the brands these consumers are relying on – and trust – the most.”

Below-prime car buyers, according to the report, are most loyal to Kia overall, although Nissan came in a strong second. When looking at the brands consumers are buying most when trading in, Chevrolet came in at number one, followed by Ford. So, while import brands score highest for loyalty, it is the domestics that these buyers are opting for more than any other brand.

And, given that brand loyalty for this buyer is almost half that (24%) of the average buyer (44%), Chevrolet’s strong showing is significant. Their recent introduction of competitively priced, feature-rich sedans with good fuel economy, such as the Cruze and Malibu, as well as their traditional strength with trucks, is resonating with below-prime consumers.

In addition, the data offers an interesting picture of the age of the vehicles being traded in by these buyers. While the average age of a vehicle on the road today is 11.4 years, the average age of a vehicle traded in by these below-prime car buyers is 8.8 years, a 6% decrease from the previous year’s 9.4. The most traded-in model year is 2006 and the top five years traded-in all pre-date the recession.

“The data continues to demonstrate that these buyers are making practical choices which not only benefit traditional economy brands, but also brands – such as Nissan and Ford – that are offering consumers good value in their entry level vehicles,” said Landy. “While these buyers are not particularly brand loyal, they favor brands that offer competitively priced vehicles with the must-have features that today’s consumers demand. They are also showing more confidence about re-entering the market, as evidenced by the fact that the age of their trade-ins is decreasing.”

Mirroring CarFinance.com’s most purchased models by below-prime car buyers, the loyalty story here is that three Kia models are in the top ten most purchased vehicle list. Kia’s options for this car buyer make it no surprise that their loyalty is strong. Meanwhile, an almost equally solid showing by Nissan, a brand that is well beyond consideration as an economy brand, is of note. Longtime Nissan owners have excellent options with Nissan’s entry vehicles, Versa and Sentra, both of which have made major strides since many of these owners were last in the market.

Below-Prime Car Buyer Loyalty: Top Five Brands Overall

  1. Kia
  2. Nissan
  3. Dodge
  4. Chevrolet
  5. Ford

The inroads made by domestic brands in recent years, with their small and mid-sized sedans, are also resonating with this segment. Together with their continued strong truck offerings, Dodge, Chevrolet and Ford are continuing to command loyalty with the below-prime car buyer.

The average age overall of cars traded in by these buyers is 8.8 years, and it is worth noting that the top five model years are all pre-recession models. While it is possible that some of the buyers did not own the vehicles for the full life span, they are trading in well under the average age of vehicles in the general population, i.e. these consumers are not holding on until their vehicles die. This indicates increased confidence among these buyers about entering the market – and when their vehicles are still viable trade-ins.

Top Trade-in Model Years

  1. 2006
  2. 2007
  3. 2008
  4. 2005
  5. 2004

The CarFinance.com Below-Prime Brand Loyalty Report is based on an analysis of funded loans used to purchase a new or used vehicle and where a trade-in was part of the transaction. The data analyzed covered the first three quarters of 2013.

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Sales Pace at 14.18 Million in January


Retail sales rose 11.4 percent in January, with the industry pacing at a 14.18 million seasonally adjusted annual sales rate — the highest rate since the government’s Cash for Clunkers program in August 2009, according to AutoData.

Toyota was the comeback kid, experiencing a 7.5 percent gain from a year ago after suffering through months of declines due to production issues caused by last year’s disasters in Japan and Thailand. At the top of the sales board were Chrysler Group and Volkswagen of America Inc., both brands registering double-digit increases. Mercedes-Benz rounded out January’s top three thanks to strong demand for its SUV and passenger car lineup.

Audi: Audi of America sold 9,354 vehicles in January, a 19.7 percent year-over-year increase from January 2011. The company’s performance marked the best January in Audi of America’s history. Sales of the Audi A6 increased 90 percent over 2011, sales of the Audi Q7 increased 15 percent, and sales of the Audi A7 totaled 643 vehicles.

BMW/MINI: BMW Group reported January sales of 19,739 vehicles, an increase of 5.8 percent from the year-ago month. Sales of BMW brand vehicles increased 3.1 percent from last January to 16,405. The best performing vehicles included the X3 SAV, up 56.9 percent to 1,687 units; the 6 Series, up 392.8 percent to 409 units; and the 7 Series, up 56.1 percent to 977 units. MINI USA reported sales of 3,334 automobiles in January, an increase of 21.2 percent from the 2,751 sold in January 2011.

Chrysler: Chrysler Group LLC sold 101,149 units in January, a 44 percent increase vs. January 2011 (70,118 units). The performance marked the group’s best January since 2008. The Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge and Ram Truck brands all posted sales gains, led by the Chrysler brand’s 81 percent increase. The group’s 44 percent increase was driven in large part by strong sales of the Chrysler 300, Chrysler 200, and Dodge Charger and Avenger sedans.

Ford: Ford Motor Company sold 136,710 vehicles in January, a 7 percent gain compared with January 2011. Retail sales increased 8 percent. Focus sales were up 60 percent, marking the best January for the model since 2003. Ford brand sales totaled 131,589 vehicles in January, marking the best January sales month for Ford brand since 2008.

GM: General Motors Company sold 167,962 vehicles in January, a 6 percent decrease vs. January 2011. GM’s total passenger car sales increased 3 percent in January, led by a 30-percent increase in sales of fuel-efficient, small and compact cars. The company’s crossover sales decreased 18 percent, and sales of trucks, which include full-size pickups, vans and SUVs, decreased 6 percent. Retail deliveries declined 15 percent year over year.

Honda/Acura: American Honda Motor Co. sold 83,009 in the U.S. in January, an increase of 8.8 percent over January 2011. The Honda Division posted sales of 74,628, an increase of 9.3 percent year over year. Civic sales increased 49.5 percent. The Accord posted sales of 13,659, up 1.5 percent from the same period last year. Acura Division’s January sales totaled 8,381 units, up 5.3 percent year over year.

Hyundai: Hyundai Motor America announced an all-time record January with sales of 42,694 units, up 15 percent vs. 2011. January retail sales were up 19 percent, led by a 13 percent increase in Elantra sales and a 27 percent increase in Genesis/Equus sales.

Mazda: Mazda North American Operations reported its best January since 1994 with U.S. sales of 23,996 vehicles, a 68.2 percent increase vs. last year. Mazda3 sales totaled 9,200 units, an 83.4 percent increase vs. last year. This was the model’s best-ever January. Mazda CX-7 and CX-9 crossover SUV sales were up 32.6 percent and 1.6 percent, respectively, marking the best-ever January for both vehicles.

Mercedes-Benz: Mercedes-Benz USA posted a 25.8 percent increase in January, with 21,726 vehicles sold. This was the best January in the company’s history. Mercedes-Benz passenger vehicles and SUVs fueled the company’s performance, with the C-Class leading the way with a 56.4 percent increase in sales. The E-Class followed with sales of 4,097, and the M-Class rounded out the Top 3 with sales of 4,002, up 61.1 percent.

Nissan/Infiniti: Nissan North America Inc. reported January sales of 79,313 units, an increase of 10.4 percent vs. last year. Nissan Division sales rose 12.5 percent for the month to 72,517 units, with Versa sales setting a new record with 9,418 deliveries (up 8.5 percent). Sales of Infiniti vehicles decreased 8.2 percent from the prior year to 6,796 units, while sales of the Infiniti QX totaled 1,020, an increase of 30.4 percent vs. last year.

Toyota: Toyota Motor Sales reported monthly sales results of 124,540 units, an increase of 7.5 percent over the year ago month on a daily selling rate (DSR) and unadjusted raw volume basis. Driven by an increase in sales of 2012 Camry and Camry hybrid, Toyota Division posted January sales of 112,266 units, an increase of 9 percent compared to the same period last year. The Lexus Division reported sales of 12,274 units, down 4.6 percent from last January.

Volkswagen: Volkswagen of America Inc. posted 27,209 units sold in January, a 47.9 percent increase compared to the year-ago period. Passat sales totaled 6,318 units, while Jetta sales totaled 9,564 units. Sales of the 2012 Beetle totaled 1,401, while Touareg sales increased 68 percent. Tiguan sales increased 50 percent. The TDI models experienced a 30.2 percent increase vs. 2011.

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Dodge Aims to Create Separate Identity with New Logo


Dodge has launched a new logo that drops the Ram’s head and aims to project an image of speed and agility appropriate for what Chrysler envisions to be its performance brand, reported the Detroit Free Press.

The new graphic should clarify the difference between Dodge cars and Ram trucks, which are now a brand unto themselves.

“It was needed as Dodge is now a standalone brand and the Ram logo was more appropriate for Ram Truck,” Dodge said in a statement.

Chrysler has treated each of its four brands — Jeep, Chrysler, Dodge and Ram trucks — as separate business units, each with its own president and CEO. Dodge is led by Ralph Gilles, who is also the company’s senior vice president for product design.

Dodge is striving to be the channel for Chrysler’s performance cars such as the Charger and Challenger. But it plans to continue offering the Caravan minivan, Caliber crossover, Nitro and the Avenger midsize sedan.

In January, Dodge chose Wieden & Kennedy, a Portland, Ore., agency known as the creator of Nike’s advertising, as its ad agency. In launching new versions of the Charger and Avenger near the end of 2010, Dodge plans to align trim levels with different lifestyle preferences of its customers.

Some new ads will tout what Dodge calls a “forever young” attitude and performance-driven history. The new brand logo features the name DODGE in capital letters paired with two red racing stripes that slash across the E, suggesting speed and agility. The logo will be used in communications, advertising, on the Internet and merchandise, but it will not appear on the vehicles or on dealership signage.

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