Steel Tariff Could Destroy 45,000 Auto Jobs: Study

First Up 03/09/18

Trump Orders Stiff Trade Tariffs, Unswayed by Grim Warnings
Unswayed by Republican warnings of a trade war, President Donald Trump ordered steep new tariffs on steel and aluminum imports to the U.S. on Thursday, vowing to fight back against an "assault on our country" by foreign competitors. According to U.S. News & World Report, the president said he would exempt Canada and Mexico as "a special case" while negotiating for changes to the North American Free Trade Agreement. The new tariffs will take effect in 15 days, with America's neighbors indefinitely spared "to see if we can make the deal," Trump said. "Tariffs are taxes, and the American taxpayer will pay the cost of a trade war," said Cody Lusk, president and CEO of the American International Automobile Dealers Association, responding to the announcement. "Even with limited exemptions, tariffs will raise the sale prices of new vehicles." Read AIADA’s full statement here. The European Union warned before the announcement that it was ready to retaliate with counter-measures against iconic U.S. products such as Harley Davidson motorcycles, Levi's jeans, and bourbon. Read more here

Trump Steel Tariff Could Destroy 45,000 Auto Jobs: Study 
President Trump’s proposed 25 percent tariff on steel imports could cost the U.S. auto industry 45,000 jobs, equivalent to almost a third of the entire steel industry’s workforce, according to a study by the Council on Foreign Relations. According to The Hill, the analysis, by Benn Steil and Benjamin Della Rocca, estimated that a 25 percent tariff would increase the price of U.S.-manufactured vehicles by 1.3 percent on average. That, in turn, would lead to a 4 percent drop is U.S. auto sales around the world and a 45,000-person reduction in the auto workforce. That figure represents a small percentage of the auto industry’s work force, but amounts to almost a third of the steel industry’s work force. “Given that employment in the U.S. auto industry is vastly higher than in the U.S. steel industry, such job losses would swamp any possible increase in steel employment,” the analysis said. Read more here

U.S. Vehicle Recalls Fall to Lowest Level Since 2013 
U.S. light-vehicle recalls fell to 30.7 million in 2017, the lowest level since 2013, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said Thursday, after a record 53 million were recalled in 2016 when a callback linked to deadly airbags was expanded. U.S. regulators have said recalls to replace Takata Corp airbag inflators will eventually affect at least 65 million inflators in 42 million U.S. vehicles built by 19 automakers, making it the largest U.S. auto safety campaign ever. According to Automotive News, NHTSA has pressured automakers to recall more vehicles since 2014 after an ignition switch defect in General Motors cars was linked to 124 deaths. The agency imposed record fines on companies that failed to follow safety rules. From 2014 through 2016, U.S. auto safety recalls set annual records of almost 50 million or more annually. In the prior 20 years, annual U.S. auto recalls ranged from 10.2 million to 30.8 million. Read more here

Breathtaking New Cars, SUVs Revealed at Geneva Motor Show  
It's one of the world's most important auto shows, one that drops more than a few hints about what shiny new models will be coming to the U.S. According to USA Today, the Geneva Motor Show attracts not only new European vehicles but ones that will be sold around the world. German luxury automakers turn out in force, but in recent years, Japanese and South Korean automakers have been prominent at the show as well. USA Today is featuring a look at some of the new models that were shown over the past week.  Lexus is calling the UX "a new gateway into the brand." That's another way of saying it will be a luxury SUV that's smaller and more affordable. And, in a world flooded with SUVs, Land Rover has come up with something different — a two-door model. The British brand introduced what it's calling the Range Rover SV Coupe. It has a door on each side — and no separate doors to access the second row. It will be a limited edition. Read more here

Toyota, Subaru, and Honda Lead Industry for Trade-In Loyalty 
Toyota, Subaru, and American Honda customers are most loyal to the brand, according to a new study examining the rate at which customers trade in vehicles for one from the same segment, manufacturer, brand or model. Automotive News reports that Edmunds analysts compiled the 2018 Edmunds Trade-In Loyalty Report from more than 13.9 million vehicle transactions between 2007 and 2017, examining the percentages of vehicles traded in to purchase a new vehicle. Lease returns were excluded from the study. Automakers with longstanding reputations for reliability offer a wide array of SUVs and leverage "emotional design" to bring customers back, the report said. Last year, 75 percent of SUV owners returned their vehicle for another SUV – compared with 57 percent of car owners trading in that car for a new one. Seventy-four percent of truck trade-ins went toward the purchase of another truck in 2017, according to Edmunds. Read more here

See You in Las Vegas 
AIADA's 48th Annual Meeting and Luncheon, held March 25 in Las Vegas, is your chance to gather with likeminded leaders to consider what the future looks like for your businesses. During the meeting, we'll introduce AIADA's 2018 Chairman, Volkswagen dealer Brad Strong of Utah, and recognize the winners of both of our annual awards – the David F. Mungenast Lifetime Achievement Award and the Fritz Hitchcock Grassroots Award. Finally, we'll hear from Volkswagen of America President and CEO Hinrich J. Woebcken on the state of our industry and the challenges he sees in the coming years.   

If you plan to attend NADA's convention this March in Las Vegas, please add AIADA's 48th Annual Meeting and Luncheon, held Sunday, March 25, to your schedule. You can register for the meeting by clicking here or by calling 1-800-GO-AIADA. 

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What Car Colors May Say About Drivers [Dayton Daily News

Robo-Cars Spark a New Kind of Road Rage [Forbes]