JD Power Says Lexus is Most Dependable Auto Brand, Ranks Tesla 30th Out of 33

First Up 02/19/21

ICYMI: AIADA Welcomes '21 Chairman, Q&A with Toyota's Bob Carter During 51st Virtual Annual Meeting

AIADA held its 51st Virtual Annual Meeting this week, considering where our industry stands as we kick off 2021 and move forward Stronger Together. Three days of installments featured a look back at 2020 with Chairman Jason Courter, an overview of 2021 Chairman Steve Gates’ plans for his year at the helm, and an in-depth Q&A with Toyota Motor North America’s Vice President of Sales, Bob Carter.

If you missed any of the programming, visit AIADA.org/VirtualMeeting to watch! 


Pandemic, New Administration on AIADA's Radar

The COVID-19 pandemic remains front and center on the agenda for the American International Automobile Dealers Assn., followed closely by the association getting to know the new Biden Admin., new legislators and staffers in Washington, and vice versa. But, reports WardsAuto, much stronger auto sales also are possible in the second half of 2021, given high U.S. household savings rates, pent-up demand, better availability of new cars and trucks, and increasingly effective vaccine distribution, says 2021 AIADA Chairman Steve Gates. “COVID is what’s on my mind, still, and I think for the first half of this year, it’s going to be a lot like last year,” Gates says in a pre-recorded webcast released Feb. 17 as part of the association’s virtual annual meeting. “But the second half of the year, I think it’s going to be remarkable. I think anybody that wants the vaccine will be able to get it, by summer. The savings are really at an all-time high. There’s got to be some pent-up demand. We’ll have vehicles, and people want to get out. So, I think this year is just going to be a barn-burner. It’s exciting,” he says. Read more here (Source: WardsAuto). 

Honda CEO Hachigo to Step Down, Be Replaced by R&D Chief Mibe

Honda said CEO Takahiro Hachigo will step down and will be succeeded by Toshihiro Mibe, the head of the automaker's research and development arm, on April 1. Automotive News reports that Hachigo will remain on the board, Honda said in a statement on Friday. Mibe, 59, joined Honda in 1987, with stints in engine development and the drivetrain business. He became the president of Honda's R&D unit in 2019, working with Hachigo to push through structural reforms. Mibe's appointment comes as Honda races to catch up in the field of all-electric cars and faces competition from new entrants and tech giants such as Tesla, Apple and Amazon. During his six years as CEO, Hachigo sought to simplify the vehicle development process by combining some operations for cars and motorcycles. He also slashed costs by streamlining Honda's model lineup and consolidating factories at home and overseas. Read more here (Source: Automotive News). 

JD Power Says Lexus is Most Dependable Auto Brand, Ranks Tesla 30th Out of 33

The three most dependable auto brands in the U.S. are now Lexus, Porsche, and Kia, according to a new J.D. Power study. CNBC reports tha the three least dependable are Jaguar, Alfa Romeo, and Land Rover. Tesla, which was profiled for the first time in this year’s vehicle dependability study, came in 30th out of 33 automakers. It landed one place behind Chrysler and one ahead of Jaguar. J.D. Power studies serve as an industry benchmark, and its results can drive sales and impact insurance premiums for owners. The 2021 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study analyzed responses from 33,251 verified owners of 2018 model-year vehicles sold in the U.S. The study assessed around 150 different models including cars, trucks, and SUVs. The dependability survey asks drivers how many and what kind of problems their cars, trucks or SUVs experienced in the past year and assigns a score based on problems reported per 100 vehicles. The lower the score, the more dependable the automaker. Read more here (Source: CNBC).

Carmakers Wake Up to New Pecking Order as Chip Crunch Intensifies

The semiconductor crunch that has battered the auto sector leaves carmakers with a stark choice: pay up, stock up, or risk getting stuck on the sidelines as chipmakers focus on more lucrative business elsewhere. Reuters reports that car manufacturers including Volkswagen, Ford, and General Motors have cut output as the chip market was swept clean by makers of consumer electronics such as smartphones – the chip industry’s preferred customers because they buy more advanced, higher-margin chips. The semiconductor shortage – over $800 worth of silicon is packed into a modern electric vehicle - has exposed the disconnect between an auto industry spoilt by decades of just-in-time deliveries and an electronics industry supply chain it can no longer bend to its will. Read more here (Source: Reuters). 

Around the Web

2022 Nissan Rogue Sport Previewed by Global Qashqai SuV [Car and Driver]

Texans Are Using Ford F-150 Hybrids to Power Their Frigid Homes During Winter Storm [MotorTrend]

Is Rolls Royce Reviving Another Name From Its Past? [MotorAuthority]

VW Considers Separeately Listing Porsche to Raise Money [Autoblog