3 crucial automotive industry developments that car dealers need to monitor


Welcome to this episode of The Friday 5 with Steve Greenfield, Founder and CEO of Automotive Ventures, an auto engineering advisory company that assists entrepreneurs increase dollars and optimize the benefit of their firms.

The information cycle proceeds at a torrid pace this yr, and this very last week was no exception. It is amazing just how a lot alter is coming to the sector. If you blink, you may possibly miss out on big information that probably impacts the franchise seller model. 

This 7 days I want to recap three crucial information merchandise that came throughout the wire more than the previous week – information that sellers really should primarily be focused on monitoring. 

1. Acquire/Promote activity

Initial up, there is NO indicator that physical dealership buy/market activity will slow down anytime before long. 

Lithia Motors has been the most ravenous of the community acquirers, intending to get to 500 rooftops and $50 billion in profits prior to they’ve crafted out their prepared footprint. Lithia’s intense speed of acquisitions has provided a flooring for valuations in the market place. 

This 7 days, Lithia introduced the invest in of 10 dealerships throughout southern Florida and Nevada, which will incorporate $950 million bucks in envisioned annualized profits.

So far, the U.S. dealership invest in-provide industry is monitoring at a similar tempo to a report-breaking 2021 past calendar year was broadly deemed the most important yr for shop acquisitions in historical past.

The quantity of dealerships that adjusted palms in the 1st quarter of 2022 was related to that of the 1st quarter of 2021.

In parallel, valuations continue on to bounce together at an all-time high. 

From my point of view, valuations will not probable get a great deal higher than they are nowadays. When natural acquirers like Lithia have glad their hunger and loaded out their prepared footprint, valuations will most likely regress to historic amounts. 

Higher inflation and gas price ranges, reduced customer sentiment, climbing fascination premiums, and inventory industry declines may possibly speed us back again to a lot more normalized valuations. 

But for now, these document-high valuations are staying used to report-substantial profits, mostly attributable to a absence of new-motor vehicle offer. Several sellers are taking the prospect to translate these surplus income into buying a lot more physical merchants. 

Although the dealer principals I talk with normally focus on only beneath-doing stores wherever they can justify paying out sky-large valuations applied to these inflated revenue. I imagine some buyers in this current atmosphere will sooner or later really feel “Buyers Remorse” when valuations inevitably drop back again to earth. 

2. Ford ends lease buyouts for EVs

Upcoming up this week is appealing news from Ford Motor Corporation, which declared that they have stopped permitting consumers in most states to obtain their electrical cars at the stop of a lease, a coverage they say will aid take care of EV battery recycling.

For case in point, Ford Credit history stated clients who lease an F-150 Lightning, Mustang Mach-E, or E-Transit have to return the vehicle when the contract is up and can then renew their lease with a new auto if they pick out.

When Ford is speaking that this initiative is to support reclaim the raw inputs into batteries, as prices have skyrocketed in excess of the past yr, I feel there might be other dynamics at enjoy. 

We’re likely to see a proliferation of new EV types above the next 18 months, and the OEMs will definitely not be able to predict residual values on all of these vehicles accurately. I believe that this will enable Ford to command residual price hazard for new EV designs that might have unstable pricing at the close of the phrase. By managing the employed motor vehicle source, Ford can intently monitor and affect the cost of applied pricing.

Both GM (with CarBravo) and Ford (with Blue Advantage) now regulate their possess on-line employed motor vehicle web sites. By controlling the off-lease quantity, they can make certain that one of a kind, interesting, made use of vehicles are only obtainable on their proprietary websites. 

The Automakers have been observing the latest employed motor vehicle dynamics, which include that most vehicles are coming back again at the conclude of lease phrase with hundreds of dollars of favourable fairness. Ford will fundamentally have a simply call selection to participate economically in any car or truck coming again with good fairness rather of surrendering that profit to the purchaser or the supplier. 

It’s also very likely that Ford realizes that battery and charging technological know-how will progress so promptly that they may perhaps want the choice of taking away made use of EVs from the highway, which could not carry out competitively versus model new versions currently being bought in the long run. 

Protecting against the customer from becoming able to acquire the device at the stop of their time period does make a lease experience a large amount far more like a membership product. 

Let’s consider about broader implications of this go, anticipating that other OEMs will elect to abide by the exact same path. It will signify significantly less off-lease vehicles obtainable to the automakers’ franchise seller networks and unbiased dealerships.

We’ll be viewing to see which other automakers announce identical programs in excess of the coming months. I expect we will see lots of others adhere to Ford’s direct. 

3. FTC cracks down on F&I departments

Very last but not minimum this week, The Federal Trade Fee has signaled that improved regulation might be coming to supplier F&I income. 

This week, the FTC proposed banning finance, insurance policies coverage, and bodily vehicle insert-ons that estimate-unquote “provide no benefit” and involve expanded disclosure and consent on this kind of optional items — together with a checklist of selling prices online.

The agency is also thinking of cracking down on dealerships’ promoting associated to the price tag of the car or truck alone.

An accompanying news release repeatedly depicted actual physical additions and F&I products as “junk fees.” Nevertheless, the 4 commissioners supporting rules acknowledged in a different statement that “Not all insert-ons give no price.”

The FTC’s proposed regulations consist of:

  • Bans on all items with out benefit. 
  • Publishing a checklist of all optional include-ons and their charges on-line. 
  • Bans on misleading pricing advertising and marketing.
  •  Disclosure and declining in writing of the “Cash Price tag without the need of Optional Add-ons.” 
  • “Express, Informed Consent” on F&I products and other insert-ons.

Because the CFPB was mostly “de-fanged” in the course of the Trump administration, there hasn’t been considerably risk of regulators squeezing vendor finance and insurance plan income. 

We will be retaining a shut eye on this most up-to-date improvement and if the FTC, or any other govt entity, commences encroaching on and threatening dealership profit centers. 

I told you the news cycle was busy this week.

These issues should be monitored carefully by dealerships and have broad implications for the franchise dealership model and ongoing profitability into the long term. 

Organizations To View 

Every single 7 days we highlight exciting corporations in the automotive engineering area to keep an eye on. If you read my month to month field Intel Report, I showcase a couple of firms just about every month, and we consider the option listed here on the Friday 5 to share some of people businesses every single 7 days with you.

Today, we have two providers to look at: WrenchWay and Axion.


For as extended as I try to remember, I have read from dealerships that they’ve experienced trouble recruiting and retaining specialists.

WrenchWay is a position-recruitment platform for both specialists and service departments. It is transforming that dynamic by supplying techs an insider’s view of dealerships’ operations, products, pay back levels, business lifestyle and other pertinent info.

WrenchWay accomplishes this with its Leading Store program. Dealerships pay a $150 every month charge to be outlined as a Top rated Store, but the listing is considerably additional in-depth than a usual career-board write-up. Sellers should contain certain facts right before posts are acknowledged, like pay degrees for experts, place of work facilities presented (things like air conditioning and heating), and available devices.

In addition, the publishing need to involve movies showing what the shop appears to be like and interviews with professionals and preset ops management who discuss about what it’s like to work in their outlets. This exclusive method marketplaces the dealership and the opportunity to more than just the work-seeker. 

I enjoy this enterprise simply because they are attempting to fix one of the most substantial agony details for dealers’ FixedOps departments – recruiting and retaining technicians. The organization was began simply because a dealership required help recruiting, and they wished to carry technological innovation and approach to make their attempts repeatable and scalable. 

You can look at out WrenchWay at www.WrenchWay.com.


Axion is an AI platform & predictive digital providing for engineers and QA management that will allow end users to successfully mine by tons of unstructured facts to derive insights to accelerate car or truck growth proficiently. 

Axion’s mission is to empower engineering leaders with the finest choice intelligence system, to improve selections to deliver the greatest results.

Forward-pondering engineering leaders throughout automotive, aerospace, and defense leverage Axion to accelerate merchandise improvement, improve program arranging & collaboration with suppliers, and strengthen high quality employing Axion’s predictive AI-primarily based digital platform. Buyers involve Boeing and the U.S. Air Power.

I really like this enterprise because they can augment a user’s latest approach to very promptly and efficiently mine by tons of unstructured data to derive insights. Axion provides crystal clear visibility into the long term final results of today’s conclusions and actions. 

Look at out Axion at www.AxionRay.com.


So that is your weekly Friday 5, a swift wrap-up of the large deals in the automotive engineering room over the past 7 days.

If you’re an early-phase automotive technology entrepreneur wanting to raise dollars, or an entrepreneur who is seeking to choose no matter whether and when they ought to raise income or sell their enterprise, I’d really like to converse with you.

Thank you for tuning into CBT Information for this week’s Friday Five, and we’ll see you up coming week!

Did you enjoy this episode of the Friday 5? Be sure to share your thoughts, feedback, or questions regarding this subject matter by publishing a letter to the editor listed here, or connect with us at [email protected].

Be guaranteed to adhere to us on Facebook, LinkedIn, and TikTok to remain up to date.

Whilst you are here, don’t forget to subscribe to our email newsletter for all the hottest automobile sector news from CBT Information.


Next Post

2022 Audi RS 7 Exclusive Edition News and Information

[ad_1] The 2022 Audi RS 7 exceptional edition ups the exclusivity ante • Confined version of 23 models build on RS 7 exclusivity with layout enhancements•A completely geared up Audi unique inside weaves Sepang blue stitching to magnify Black upholstery finishes•Standard performance tools which include Ceramic brakes with blue calipers, […]

You May Like