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Melissa Burden

Retail reporter
Address: 1155 Gratiot Ave.
48207-2997 Detroit, Mich.
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Phone: 313-446-1637
E-Mail: mburden@crain.com
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Recent authored articles

Real-world scenarios reinforce behavior

The Association of Finance and Insurance Professionals certifies F&I personnel in areas of ethical decision-making.

Volvo dealers in California revolt against subscriptions

As Volvo prepares a new and improved version of its Care by Volvo subscroption service, California hears the grumbling of dealer protests.

One-person, one-price strategy aids ethics

The transparency of a one-person, one-price approach lends itself to a more ethical culture, said some dealers who have made the switch.

California dealer association asks Volvo to halt subscription service in the state

The California New Car Dealers Association asked Volvo to stop its Care by Volvo subscription service after a review found what the association believes to be violations of California franchise laws.

Lincoln: No change to anti-dualing policy despite Calif. dealer backlash

Lincoln says building standalone luxury showrooms is vital to its growth; California dealer group says it's financially harmful.

Architect of Cruise deal now gets to run the company

UPDATED: 11/29/18 4:13 pm ET - adds comment

Dan Ammann will now lead the autonomous vehicle company he helped GM acquire in Cruise Automation.

Dealership group owned by ex-NFL players turns over vehicles to Nissan finance arm

An ailing dealership group owned by two former NFL players and an auto industry veteran has agreed to turn over vehicle collateral to Nissan Motor Acceptance from three of its now-closed stores.


Automotive News All star David Rosenberg, CEO of Prime Automotive Group, helped launch a new vehicle subscription program this year.

Calif. group's 7 stores close abruptly amid financial woes

UPDATED: 11/27/18 8:56 am ET

After months of financial woes, Rahim Hassanally, the prominent young dealer principal of Momentum Auto Group in California, abruptly shut down seven stores.

Calif. dealers to Ford: Don't punish us for not building separate Lincoln stores

UPDATED: 11/21/18 4:14 pm ET -- adds Ford statement

The California New Car Dealers Association is asking Ford CEO Jim Hackett to cease anti-dualing policies in California that could affect about 33 dual Ford-Lincoln dealers in the state.

Penske, Lithia to workers: Get a physical, save money

Penske Automotive Group Inc. and other public retailers are offering financial rewards to employees and their spouses for things like getting a physical or completing biometric screenings. The companies want to improve employee health and tackle rising health care costs.

Zotye's U.S. goal: No-hassle retailing

Chinese automaker Zotye has begun signing up U.S. retailers and plans to "really shake things up" when it comes to factory-dealer norms.

Penske alters drug plan to combat opioid abuse

Through its insurance provider, Penske Automotive Group Inc. is changing its prescription programs to help curb opioid abuse.

Alert to dealers: Plan for your future, or plan to cash out

Presidio Group, a dealership buy-sell advisory firm, recommends that its clients create a conversion plan to serve the future industry or opt to sell their dealerships ahead of predicted dealership disruption from autonomous vehicles.

Former NFL players' stores lose franchises

A once-prospering dealership group has lost franchises at two of its dealerships in Pennsylvania, while two Michigan dealerships have closed.

Dealerships owned by ex-NFL stars lose Nissan, Kia franchises

A dealership group facing lawsuits by two captive lenders over allegations of failing to repay millions of dollars in floorplan loans lost at least two of its franchises, while two other dealerships have now closed.

China's auto retailers waiting in the wings

Chinese dealers and retail investment groups are testing the waters for U.S. operations

NISSAN: Cars slump, Infiniti jumps

Nissan Division's U.S. sales fall 13% in October on sharp decline in car sales

HONDA: Sedans a drag yet Acura advances

American Honda saw strong U.S. sales in October from its Acura brand, but a 14 percent drop in overall car sales pulled sales down for the company by 4.1 percent.

Sonic's Q3 net income drops 22%, but EchoPark thrives

UPDATED: 10/25/18 4:22 pm ET - adds stock close

Sonic Automotive's net income dipped in the third quarter because of lower revenue and new-vehicle sales, though the company saw gains in its standalone EchoPark used-vehicle operations.

Penske profits jump on sales gains, tax benefit, U.K. boost

UPDATED: 10/25/18 4:18 pm ET - adds stock close

Penske Automotive's third-quarter earnings set records, aided by increases in overall sales, plus higher gross profits in most parts of its retail automotive business.

Dealers in Florida and Georgia rebuild after Hurricane Michael

Dealerships in several states were damaged after Hurricane Michael, but in terms of concentrated wreckage, Panama City, Fla., appears to be ground zero.

Dealers sue Mazda over multi-tier bonus plan

Florida dealership Kuhn Mazda and the New Jersey Coalition of Automotive Retailers are suing Mazda Motor of America Inc. in two lawsuits alleging its new Mazda Brand Experience Program 2.0 violates state franchise laws and includes price discrimination.

Ohioan in line to lead NADA

Ricart, 61, CEO of Ricart Automotive Group near Columbus, was elected last week as NADA's next vice chairman, putting him in line to become chairman in 2020.

Ohio dealer Rhett Ricart elected NADA's next vice chairman

The National Automobile Dealers Association has elected Ohio dealer Rhett Ricart as its next vice chairman, meaning Ricart is in line to become chairman in 2020.

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