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NADA’s Tonkin: Auto manufacturing and retailing will help lead the economic recovery.
McLEAN, Va. (Jan. 25, 2011) – While auto dealers, manufacturers and industry analysts may all have different ideas about “what it takes to win big at retail,” the topic of a forum next month in San Francisco, two things are certain for success—and that’s understanding what your customers want and then meeting their needs.
“Nothing happens without a buyer,” said Ed Tonkin, chairman of the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA). “The best way to bring shoppers into dealerships is to build stylish cars and trucks they want to buy. And when dealers and manufacturers work together, that’s when the magic happens.”
“The good news is that we’re starting to see some real evidence that things are getting better. The auto industry’s revival appears to be on solid ground,” added Tonkin, who will join several industry leaders at the International Automotive Roundtable hosted by J.D. Power and Associates in San Francisco on Friday, Feb. 4.
Tonkin says he’s confident that auto manufacturing and retailing will help lead the economic recovery.
“An increase in consumer demand for both new and used vehicles, and parts, service and aftermarket sales all point to an improving outlook for auto retailing and the economy overall this year,” he said.
The roundtable is being held in conjunction with the 2011 NADA Convention & Expo, which runs Feb. 5-7 at the Moscone Center.
“Every aspect of the NADA convention is designed to prepare dealers to ‘win big at retailing’ and to learn new, innovative ways to reach car shoppers—from the peer-to-peer exchange of ideas, franchise meetings and workshop sessions to shopping for new products on the Expo floor,” said Tonkin, who is vice president and general counsel of Ron Tonkin Dealerships in Portland, Ore.
Tonkin will be part of an automaker-dealer panel with Mark Reuss, president of General Motors North America; Ernst Lieb, president and CEO of Mercedes-Benz USA; and Bob Carter, group vice president and general manager, Toyota Division, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. Mike Jackson, CEO and chairman of AutoNation, will moderate the panel.
“We are thrilled to have Mr. Tonkin join the International Automotive Roundtable panel,” said John Humphrey, senior vice president of automotive operations at J.D. Power and Associates. “His profound insights on the automotive industry will add immense value to our slate of presentations and panel discussions.”
The roundtable’s scheduled keynote speaker is Sergio Marchionne, CEO of Chrysler Group. J.D. Power and Associates will also provide its annual franchise assessment, global automotive outlook and insights from industry experts on U.S. auto sales this year.
Finbarr O’Neill, president of J.D. Power and Associates, and Phil Brady, NADA president, will make closing remarks.
About NADA: The National Automobile Dealers Association, founded in 1917, represents nearly 16,000 new-car and truck dealers with about 34,700 franchises both domestic and international.
Editor’s note: J.D. Power and Associates’ roundtable will take place at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 4. Click here for more information or to register. The roundtable will be followed by the first-ever NADA Welcome Reception, co-hosted by J.D. Power and Associates, at the San Francisco Marriott Marquis from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. This is a ticketed event. For more information, visitwww.NADAconventionandexpo.org.
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