Stan Visnesky wanted to spice up his daily drive with a souped-up small hatchback. Rather than go for a more popular and pricey road rocket from Germany’s Volkswagen AG, Visnesky bought Ford Motor Co.’s Focus ST.
Detroit’s boom-and-bust history was built on a dependence on big, fuel-thirsty vehicles. Now, with freshly stocked showrooms of new cars and more-efficient trucks, U.S. automakers are gaining ground on their Asian competitors with the best lineup in a generation.
Each time An Fu Ford, a dealership in the western Chinese city of Chongqing, sells a car, workers fire a confetti cannon, showering the parking lot with colorful scraps of paper. There’s a lot of paper to sweep up these days.
At his Houston Cadillac store last weekend, Carl Sewell had an unusual experience: He helped a mother secure a baby seat into a car she was considering. Young- shopper sightings were once a rarity for Sewell.
Ford Motor Co. is on a tear in China, with sales up 54 percent this year on the strength of its Focus small car. Long an also-ran in the world’s largest auto market, Ford is now outselling Toyota Motor Corp. there.
Toyota Motor Corp.’s Lexus, dethroned by BMW and Mercedes as the U.S. luxury sales leader, aims to remake itself with models more like performance cars and less like family cars, leading to a new IS sport sedan intended to lure entry-level drivers who would otherwise buy German.
Chevrolet Dealer Gordon Stewart’s greatest challenge used to be competing against superior Japanese sedans. Now his biggest headache is getting General Motors Co. to build enough Chevy cars to satisfy growing demand.
Ford Motor Co. , returning to the U.S. minivan market after at least a four-year absence, will count on a compact people mover it developed in Europe to drive sales to the children of the American Baby Boom generation.