DAILY EDITION: May 23, 2003

May 22, 2003

TCC'S DAILY EDITION: May 23, 2003

Next Caddy CTSv To Nudge 500 HP

2005 Cadillac CTSv

2005 Cadillac CTSv

While the new, 400-hp Cadillac CTSv sedan is still a half-year away from market, the resurgent General Motors division is already aiming its sights even higher as part of a planned mid-cycle update. The ’04 CTSv will debut with the 5.7-liter LS6 under the hood, a version of the big V-8 currently powering the Chevrolet Corvette. In 2006, several sources tell TheCarConnection.com, an upgraded LS6 will grow to 6.0-liters displacement. And as for horsepower? “We haven’t determined where that would take us yet,” said one well-placed source. But Caddy knows where it needs to go if it sticks with plans to make the CTSv a credible contender to the likes of BMW’s vaunted M models and the likes of Mercedes’ AMG lineup. Where 400 ponies was long an industry target, 500 hp is the new benchmark. Well-placed sources expect a limited-edition version of the next Corvette, dubbed C6, to nudge past that magic number, and the CTSv is likely to follow close behind. For ’06, both the base CTS and the V-Series version will get new, more lavish interiors. And Cadillac will add its computer-controlled MagneRide suspension, at least on the CTSv. Like all perform plans, insiders caution, future fuel-economy regulations could lead to a change in plans. —TCC Team

GM “Sleeps On It” To Improve Image by James Amend (5/19/2003)
Will prospective owners still respect GM cars if they stay the night?

Ford: Takeover Certain Without Family

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Without the Ford family presence, Ford Motor Company would have been a takeover target during the last 18 months, company chairman William Clay Ford Jr. told the Detroit News this week. The company’s problems, Ford says, were attracting potential investors by dint of its extremely low stock price, which fell below $7 a share at one point. The family’s ownership stake, set up in 1956, effectively blocks hostile takeovers, the paper quotes Ford; “And given where our stock price has been in the past 18 months, it’s a high likelihood that that would have happened,” Ford told the News. Ford and other descendants of Henry Ford share a 40-percent voting stake in Ford Motor Company, held in a special Class B set of shares. Ford’s market value is hovering under $18 billion, and with its cash on hand of about $26 billion, “we clearly would have been a takeover target,” Ford added.

Shrinking Dollar Helping Detroit by Joseph Szczesny (5/19/2003)
But which companies will benefit from the rising euro?

DaimlerChrysler: Windsor Plant Deal Off

DaimlerChrysler has informed the Canadian government that it will not build a new assembly plant, complete with supplier park, in the city of Windsor, Ontario. Chrysler Group has cancelled plans for the new plant because of its softening profit picture, due mostly to incentive and rebate spending in North America. Many analysts had expected that the company would build a small pickup truck patterned after its M80 concept at the plant and distribute it through the Dodge and possibly Mitsubishi brands. Chrysler Group CEO Dieter Zetsche also cited the overcapacity problem in North America as a reason for pulling the plug on the project, which had been planned to open in 2005.

DC Commits to One, Maybe Two Plants by Joseph Szczesny (10/21/2002)
What’s really going on in Windsor and Savannah? Only DaimlerChrysler officials really know.

WORLD REPORT: Mexico

Fiat to Enter Mexican Market

The mystery is officially over. Six months after Fiat showed up in AutoExpo Mexicana for the first time, the automaker has announced that it is coming to the Mexican market, and it’s doing so through GM de Mexico.

Fiat will take advantage of the GM de Mexico infrastructure and will start selling its vehicles in Mexico in the third quarter of this year. The models Fiat chose for the Mexican market are the five-door Palio, Palio sedan and Palio Adventure.

As a result of this announcement, the GM de Mexico distribution channel will be modified. Previously, GM de Mexico had Chevrolet-Pontiac dealerships, while the premium models were sold though Cadillac-Saab retailers. Now GM de México will sell Chevrolet products in dedicated dealerships and Fiat will sell in the same showrooms as Pontiac.

The new dealerships will be called Pontiac-Fiat and soon will start operating in Mexico City, Guadalajara, Monterrey, and Queretaro. The premium distribution channel will remain unchanged, meaning that Cadillac and Saab will sell in the same showrooms. — Francisco Pérez

FROM THE SOURCE headlines from the latest press releases

PRNewswire

For the third year in a row,Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), U.S.A., Inc., has topped the Automotive Market Environmental Superiority (AMES) Awards with eleven winners. Polk Automotive Intelligence, an authority on vehicle environmental performance, announced the AMES awards.

THE TICKER

Name Symbol Last Chg
AUTOLIV ALV 23.84 +0.01
AUTONATION INC AN 13.63 +0.12
ARVINMERITOR ARM 16.13 +0.25
AMER AXLE & MANU AXL 23.61 +0.20
BALLARD PWR SYS BLDP 13.19 -0.14
BORG WARNER BWA 55.85 +0.54
COLLINS AIKMAN CKC 2.88 -0.02
CUMMINS INC CUM 30.90 +1.79
DANA CORP DCN 8.86 +0.28
DAIMLERCHRYSLER DCX 30.73 +0.45
DELPHI CORP DPH 8.14 -0.02
EATON CORP ETN 78.63 +1.42
FORD MOTOR CO F 9.72 +0.05
GENERAL MOTORS GM 33.61 +0.07
GENTEX CORP GNTX 29.09 -0.07
GOODYEAR TIRE GT 6.63 +0.14
HONDA MOTOR CO HMC 17.11 +0.23
JOHNSON CONTROLS JCI 81.13 +0.80
LEAR CORP LEA 39.50 +0.43
MAGNA INTL MGA 65.03 +1.10
MOTOROLA INC MOT 8.44 +0.14
NISSAN MOTORS NSANY 15.14 +0.25
SONIC AUTOMOTIVE SAH 17.80 -0.09
TOWER AUTO TWR 3.48 +0.32
TOYOTA MOTOR TM 45.80 +0.15
UNIT AUTO GRP UAG 17.82 +0.72
VISTEON CORP VC 6.06 -0.01

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