Automotive Landscape for OEMs, Dealers Remains a Little Bumpy but Bright

2012 International Automotive Roundtable Panel with Moderator Mike Jackson (right), AutoNation CEO and Chairman

Sales and marketing officials from General Motors Co., Fiat-Chrysler and Hyundai Groups joined NADA’s 2011 chairman and presented their viewpoints of important issues and answered questions during a panel discussion at the 2012 J.D. Power International Automotive Roundtable earlier this month.

The following three posts include excerpts from a Q&A session about dealer allocation, fleet sales, leasing and more led by panel moderator Mike Jackson, chairman and CEO of AutoNation, the largest public automotive retailer in the United States.

Panel Members:

Alan Batey —Vice President, Chevrolet Sales and Service, General Motors Company

Reid A. Bigland —President & CEO, Dodge Car Brand & Head of U.S. Sales/President and CEO, Chrysler Canada, Chrysler Group LLC

Stephen W. Wade —President, Stephen Wade Auto Center and 2011 Chairman, National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA)

Dave Zuchowski —Executive Vice President, National Sales, Hyundai Motor America

 Product Allocation Needs to Be as Equitable as Possible

Q: Mike Jackson: Does the panel believe that the manufacturer should limit the number of cars a single franchise can receive—a cap on quantity in any given market?

Dave: We look at it a different way because of our shortages. We’ve had dealers ask: Shouldn’t there be a minimum stocking effort so we have critical mass to represent the line? That’s something we are looking at. In terms of capping dealer availability, it works against the turn system. Continue reading ›

J.D. Power’s Humphrey Offers Brighter Outlook for Global Auto Market


Leslie Cocco

The global automotive industry, including North America, is better able to keep production in line with demand than in the past, according to John Humphrey, senior vice president and general manager of J.D. Power’s global auto operations. John told participants at our 2012 International Automotive Roundtable today that J.D. Power is largely bullish about the auto market in the near future, projecting global sales of 79.2 million light vehicles in 2012, and rising to 99 million unit sales in 2015.

Humphrey stated that more than half (55%) of global auto sales in 2015 are projected to be in emerging markets, and he pointed out that drivers of this growth include the return of sub-prime-credit customers to the market, decreasing credit restrictions, and increasing demand.

John Humphrey

Humphrey also said there are risks to this growth: geopolitical tensions in the Mideast Gulf region; the negative impact of the Euro debt crisis; unemployment; the economic slowdown in China; and the lack of infrastructure in emerging markets.

Humphrey also discussed the inevitable change in the market in relation to Gen Y consumers. Changes that he mentioned are technology-driven, and relate to the way that young shoppers expect to do their shopping—online, via mobile, and Apps—and the expectations they have for technology in vehicles. A majority, or 79%, of shoppers are going to third-party sites, rather than OEM or dealer sites, which makes brand management and messaging a challenge, he said. Continue reading ›

2012 J.D. Power Roundtable: Adding Momentum to Auto Industry Recovery

In less than two weeks, members of the auto industry will get together for one full day of networking, idea sharing, gaining fresh insight, and discussing key issues affecting manufacturers, suppliers, retailers and customers at our J.D. Power International Automotive Roundtable at the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas, NV.

This year’s Roundtable, to be held on Friday, Feb. 3, includes a reception immediately following the event that is co-sponsored by the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA). The one-day event, which precedes the annual NADA Convention and attracts industry participants from around the world, will feature insight and projections about the automotive industry from our own J.D. Power experts, in addition to perspectives from key executives representing major automotive manufacturers and dealer groups. Continue reading ›

Hyundai Connects with Consumers through YouTube and National TV

Wooing the consumer with “truth, candor and conversation,” is the best way to characterize Hyundai’s approach to digital and social media advertising, according to Steve Shannon, vice president of marketing at Hyundai Motor America. He told more than 1,200 Internet, advertising and automotive industry participants today at our 2011 Automotive Internet Roundtable in Las Vegas, NV, that advertising is all about providing a great national platform through combining targeted, more personal social media delivery with traditional media.

Establishing the Hyundai brand has been an evolutionary process. “Our story used to be all about price. Now, the story is all about truth and value.” Shannon said that, in the past, they have had some quality issues, but they have made large gains and are moving forward with quality, noting that “assurance has become part of Hyundai’s guarantee, in addition to a trade-in value guarantee.” He said that Hyundai design is now a compelling reason for purchase. Continue reading ›