Can Detroit Make the Cars Customers Want?

In: Other Topics

Submitted By chamito
Words 968
Pages 4
Burger King lets you "have it your way. Your local car dealer is usually not quite so customer friendly.
A typical ready-to-buy car shopper may walk into the dealership with an idea of how much he or she wants to spend and which features the car should inc1ude for that price.
Many dealers will order a customized vehicle for a customer, but such an order usually adds six to eight weeks to the transaction. The customer who wants to buy on the spot must choose from cars on the lot that the manufacturer has already configured, priced, and shipped. Despite manufacturer incentives and rebates to entice customers to purchase, dealers often have a glut of new cars sitting in their lots for months at a time that no one wants to buy. The swollen inventory and slow turnaround hurt dealers because they must borrow money to pay for the cars the manufacturers ship.
AutoNation, the largest chain of car dealers in the United States, is no exception. With near1y $18 billion in annual revenue, AutoNation is the leading seller of automobiles in the country. The company has 244 dealerships in 16 states and sells four percent of all new cars sold in the United States. But it, too, has excessive inventory that it can't easily sell. The upsurge in gasoline prices coupled with a weakened U.S. economy have made the problem even worse. U.S. dealers' lots are bulging with unsold gas-guzzling pickup trucks and SUVS. Detroit auto makers have lost even more market share to the Japanese and Koreans, who are adept at producing small fuel-efficient cars. U.S. auto manufacturers are scrambling to revamp their product lineups, but they cannot move quickly enough.
Why haven't auto manufacturers been able to produce the car models and options customers actually want? Why can't they just produce more small fuel-efficient vehicles? One reason is that their manufacturing processes are not set up to…...

Similar Documents

Customer Needs and Wants

... Achieving Excellence: How to Truly Understand and Fulfill Customer Needs, Wants, and DesiresBy Mark Hamister, CEO, The Hamister Group, Inc. My vision of how to lead a company has always been based on three principles: know your product; understand your customer; and don’t accept mediocrity.Knowing your product is the easiest of the three, although we all have encountered plenty of sales and management staff who don’t. These people need to practice MBIWA (Management by Interacting and Walking Around) and | understand their products from the front line.  I advise my management staff to get out onto the floors, talk to people in every department, and learn how each part of the product works. I stay in my hotels as a guest and take my spouse with me for a woman's perspective. After learning every aspect of our properties, we then take great care to avoid falling into the trap of fixating on our products so intensely that we can’t see them through our customers’ eyes.Most companies view customer needs, wants, and desires from their own perspective or try to guess at them.  This is unfortunately the case with people who know their products exceptionally well: they can’t see them from any vantage point but their own.  Our team prides itself on asking customers what their needs, wants, and desires are.  We actively listen to our guests and base our product strategies on their responses.  For example, we recently asked some of our extended-stay guests about their hotel......

Words: 718 - Pages: 3

Can Detroit Make the Cars Customers Want

...CAN DETROIT MAKE THE CARS CUSTOMERS WANT? Burger King lets you "have it your way. Your local car dealer is usually not quite so customer friendly. A typical ready-to-buy car shopper may walk into the dealership with an idea of how much he or she wants to spend and which features the car should inc1ude for that price. Many dealers will order a customized vehicle for a customer, but such an order usually adds six to eight weeks to the transaction. The customer who wants to buy on the spot must choose from cars on the lot that the manufacturer has already configured, priced, and shipped. Despite manufacturer incentives and rebates to entice customers to purchase, dealers often have a glut of new cars sitting in their lots for months at a time that no one wants to buy. The swollen inventory and slow turnaround hurt dealers because they must borrow money to pay for the cars the manufacturers ship. AutoNation, the largest chain of car dealers in the United States, is no exception. With near1y $18 billion in annual revenue, AutoNation is the leading seller of automobiles in the country. The company has 244 dealerships in 16 states and sells four percent of all new cars sold in the United States. But it, too, has excessive inventory that it can't easily sell. The upsurge in gasoline prices coupled with a weakened U.S. economy have made the problem even worse. U.S. dealers' lots are bulging with unsold gas-guzzling pickup trucks and SUVS. Detroit auto makers have lost even...

Words: 968 - Pages: 4

Can Detroit Make the Cars Customers Want

...Can Detroit make the cars customers want? 1. Why is AutoNation having a problem with its inventory? Why is this also a problem for auto manufacturers such as GM, Ford,  and Chrysler? How is this problem impacting the business performance of  AutoNation and of the auto manufacturers? AutoNation is having a problem with inventory because of the culture of ordering a customized vehicle for a customer, but such an order usually adds six to eight weeks to the transaction. The customer who wants to buy on the spot must choose from cars on the lot that the manufacturer has already configured, priced, and shipped. Despite manufacturer incentives and rebates to entice customers to purchase, dealers often have a glut of new cars sitting in their lots for months at a time that no one wants to buy it. The swollen inventory and slow turnaround hurt dealers because they must borrow money to pay for the cars the manufacturers ship. This has also become a problem for auto manufacturers such as GM, Ford and Chrysler due to their manufacturing processes which are not set up to quickly change production models and have been geared toward optimizing the efficiency of the production plant. Again because of the frequent change in consumer tastes which can shift almost overnight as gasoline prices rise or fall, or as one automotive fashion fad gives way to another. This problem is impacting the business performance of AutoNation and of the auto manufacturers because of following......

Words: 310 - Pages: 2

Customer Needs and Wants

...or Contrast the Customer Service Compare or contrast the customer service, customer satisfaction, and customer success philosophies of supply chain management. Define Customer Service (logistic perspective) “A customer service program must identify and prioritize all activities required to meet customers logistical requirements as well as, or better than competitors.” And in a “cost effective manner”. Bowersox The three elements of basic Logistics Customer Service are: availability, operational performance and service reliability Customer Satisfaction (logistical perspective) delighting the customer and turning the satisfied customer into a loyal customer Customer Success Philosophies (logistical perspective) Similarities * Customer “A focus on customer success represents a major commitment toward accommodating customers” Bowersox * Good customer service scores are typically given if the customer is responsive to the customer – this in turn could equate to high customer satisfaction. * Customer Satisfaction is tied to the success of the customer. Differences * “The difference between customer service and customer satisfaction is that one is a cause, while the other is the effect or result of that cause.” e-how http://www.ehow.com/about_6700664_difference-customer-service-customer-satisfaction.html * Customer satisfaction results when customer expectations have been met, this is not necessarily the case in Customer......

Words: 279 - Pages: 2

Customer Behaviour and Luxury Car

...Consumer behaviour is extremely complex ever changing matter that is based on many aspects such as culture, social class, life style, gender, locations and many other things. Either purchasing for a need or a want. Motives for purchasing or owning something is different. Automotive industry for instance, individuals can buy car because it will save them time, effort to go to work. Others can buy a car while already having another one for the “fun, joy” of having it. Information process model points out the consumer as a an individual that is capable of reflecting the capability for correct and valid reasoning who find a solution to concerns or problems to make purchasing decisions (HOLBROOK and HIRSCHMAN, 1982). This model is questionable in terms of that it has a lack of attention towards the consumption phenomena where feelings effect the consumers behaviour. If we would consider the “consumption” of a luxury car, could we consider it from a information processing perspective? “Consumption has begun to be seen as involving a steady flow of fantasies, feelings, and fun encompassed by what we call the "experiential view."” (HOLBROOK and HIRSCHMAN, 1982: 132) This is where consumers “experience” by actual “consuming” the product (or service). There is a difference between “purchase / buying” and consuming. Consuming is simply “experiencing the product by actually consuming it” (HOLBROOK and HIRSCHMAN, 1982: 137). So the term “consuming” in the perspective of......

Words: 998 - Pages: 4

Can Detroit Make the Cars Customers Want?

...problem with its inventory? They order a customized vehicle for a customer, but such an order usually adds six to eight weeks o the transaction. The customer who wants to buy on the spot must choose from cats on the lot that the manufacturer has already configured, priced, and shipped. Dealers often have a glut of new cars sitting in their lots for months at a time that no one wants to buy it. The swollen inventory and slow turnaround hurt dealers because they must borrow money to pay for the cars the manufacturers ship. Why is this also a problem for auto manufacturers such as GM, Ford, and Chrysler? Their manufacturing processes are not set up to quickly change production models and have been geared toward optimizing the efficiency of the production plant. How is this problem impacting the business performance of AutoNation and of the auto manufacturers? It has become imperative for the manufacturers to keep their plants running regardless of demand to pay for the rising costs of employee healthcare and pensions. What’s more, auto workers must be paid most of their salaries regardless of whether they are working. 2. What pieces of data do AutoNation need to determine what cars to stock in each of its dealerships? The data on the habits of car buyers and the most popular configurations of all makes of vehicles. How can it obtain these data? They put forth a major effort to consolidate the customer lists from its hundreds of dealerships They uses......

Words: 2357 - Pages: 10

Can Detroit Make Cars Customers Want

...Can Detroit make cars customers want? . Why is AutoNation having a problem with its inventory? They order a customized vehicle for a customer, but such an order usually adds six to eight weeks o the transaction. The customer who wants to buy on the spot must choose from cats on the lot that the manufacturer has already configured, priced, and shipped. Dealers often have a glut of new cars sitting in their lots for months at a time that no one wants to buy it. The swollen inventory and slow turnaround hurt dealers because they must borrow money to pay for the cars the manufacturers ship. Why is this also a problem for auto manufacturers such as GM, Ford, and Chrysler? Their manufacturing processes are not set up to quickly change production models and have been geared toward optimizing the efficiency of the production plant. How is this problem impacting the business performance of AutoNation and of the auto manufacturers? It has become imperative for the manufacturers to keep their plants running regardless of demand to pay for the rising costs of employee healthcare and pensions. What’s more, auto workers must be paid most of their salaries regardless of whether they are working. 2. What pieces of data do AutoNation need to determine what cars to stock in each of its dealerships? The data on the habits of car buyers and the most popular configurations of all makes of vehicles. How can it obtain these data? They put forth a major effort to consolidate the customer......

Words: 340 - Pages: 2

Can Detroit Make the Cars Customers Want?

...Burger King lets you "have it your way. Your local car dealer is usually not quite so customer friendly. A typical ready-to-buy car shopper may walk into the dealership with an idea of how much he or she wants to spend and which features the car should inc1ude for that price. Many dealers will order a customized vehicle for a customer, but such an order usually adds six to eight weeks to the transaction. The customer who wants to buy on the spot must choose from cars on the lot that the manufacturer has already configured, priced, and shipped. Despite manufacturer incentives and rebates to entice customers to purchase, dealers often have a glut of new cars sitting in their lots for months at a time that no one wants to buy. The swollen inventory and slow turnaround hurt dealers because they must borrow money to pay for the cars the manufacturers ship. AutoNation, the largest chain of car dealers in the United States, is no exception. With near1y $18 billion in annual revenue, AutoNation is the leading seller of automobiles in the country. The company has 244 dealerships in 16 states and sells four percent of all new cars sold in the United States. But it, too, has excessive inventory that it can't easily sell. The upsurge in gasoline prices coupled with a weakened U.S. economy have made the problem even worse. U.S. dealers' lots are bulging with unsold gas-guzzling pickup trucks and SUVS. Detroit auto makers have lost even more market share to the Japanese and Koreans, who...

Words: 817 - Pages: 4

Can Detroit Make Cars Customers Want

...Can Detroit Make The Cars Customers Want? 1. Why is AutoNation having a problem with its inventory? They order a customized vehicle for a customer, but such an order usually adds six to eight weeks o the transaction. The customer who wants to buy on the spot must choose from cats on the lot that the manufacturer has already configured, priced, and shipped. Dealers often have a glut of new cars sitting in their lots for months at a time that no one wants to buy it. The swollen inventory and slow turnaround hurt dealers because they must borrow money to pay for the cars the manufacturers ship. Why is this also a problem for auto manufacturers such as GM, Ford, and Chrysler? Their manufacturing processes are not set up to quickly change production models and have been geared toward optimizing the efficiency of the production plant. How is this problem impacting the business performance of AutoNation and of the auto manufacturers? It has become imperative for the manufacturers to keep their plants running regardless of demand to pay for the rising costs of employee healthcare and pensions. What’s more, auto workers must be paid most of their salaries regardless of whether they are working. 2. What pieces of data do AutoNation need to determine what cars to stock in each of its dealerships? The data on the habits of car buyers and the most popular configurations of all makes of vehicles. How can it obtain these data? They put forth a major effort to......

Words: 342 - Pages: 2

Can Detroit Make the Cars Customers Want

...over 33 million customers annually and provides direct passenger service to over 170 destinations on five continents. But the company's information systems had plenty of room for improvement. When Air Canada technicians worked on planes, they used several different legacy software packages installed over the past 15 years. The systems weren't able to interact with one another or with finance and inventory systems. The inefficiencies of these systems were costing Air Canada the time of its engineers and money that could have been used on maintaining its planes, instead of needlessly maintaining excess inventory. Air Canada turned to Mxi Technologies for help in addressing these problems. Mxi is renowned in the airline industry for its Maintenix software package, which provides integrated, intelligent aviation MRO (maintenance, repair, and operations) software to aviation organizations hoping to improve productivity. The benefits of Maintenix that interested Air Canada were enhanced visibility of fleet-wide data, timelier decision-making, support of its currently existing business mo del, and increased operational efficiencies. Maintenix provides a system platform that is accessible via the Web and easy to deploy to all stations around the world, Mxi claims that their software reduces repetitive tasks and time chasing missing or incomplete information by allowing maintenance, engineering, and finance divisions to easily share information. Maintenix can supply......

Words: 2708 - Pages: 11

Can Detroit Make the Cars Customers Want?

...CASE STUDY 01 CAN DETROIT MAKE THE CARS CUSTOMERS WANT? 01. Why is AutoNation having a problem with its inventory? Why is this also a problem for the manufacturers such as GM, Ford and Chrysler? How is this problem impacting the business performance of AutoNation and of the auto manufacturers? Vehicles like SUVs and pickup trucks become sales pariahs the question comes that booms is whether the automakers would   still be able to sell every car they have.   With the lethal combination of a slumping economy, tight credit, depressed homebuilding, and record high gas prices, Americans can't afford to buy as many new cars as they once did. And the models they want are smaller and more fuel-efficient. Even with deep discounts and heavy incentives, the rows of unsold Dodge Rams   and Chevy Trailblazers parked in front of dealerships across the country barely seem to thin. Unlike Shaws or Wal-Mart none of these manufacturers do buy backs of the merchandise a retailer doesn't sell to a consumer. The misconception many people have about new-car sales is that the automaker is actually doing the selling to consumers but in reality, a manufacturer sells to a dealer, and it's up to the dealer to retail the inventory and in this case it’s the same story with AutoNation they are being loaded with the unwanted inventory which results in stocking up there yards and also getting them costs such as interests on the money that had been borrowed from the bank. The increasing influence being...

Words: 3049 - Pages: 13

Read the Case Study Can Detroit Make the Cars Customers Want? and Answer the Following Questions:

...Process (RUP) methodology, and Agile. Excellent skills in writing Business Requirements Document (BRD), Functional Specification Document (FSD) and Non-Functional Specification Document, System Design Specification (SDS) Performed Gap analysis, SWOT analysis, Risk analysis, and Cost/Benefit analysis. Coordinating various technical and managerial teams at all levels. Tracing requirements throughout the development process and verifying adherence using the Requirements Traceability Matrix (RTM). Tracing requirements throughout the development process and verifying adherence using the Requirements Traceability Matrix (RTM). Experience in conducting Joint Application Development (JAD) sessions, project meetings, reviews, walkthroughs, and customer interviews. Contribute to the identification and initiation of process improvements which have resulted in an increase in accountability for SOX compliance, Emerging Market and Interest rate Derivatives (IRD). Extensive knowledge of GAAP, Financial accounting, Investment banking, Fixed Income Products and preparation of Financial Statements. Expertise in conducting User Acceptance Testing (UAT) and verifying performance, reliability and fault tolerance issues. Requirements management using tools like Rational Requisite Pro, and Microsoft Project for project management Created Test Plans, Test Cases, Test Scenarios and Test Strategies to ensure Quality Assurance and to test all the business requirements. Extensively involved......

Words: 2587 - Pages: 11

Can Detroit Make the Cars Customers Want

...CAN DETROIT MAKE THE CARS CUSTOMERS WANT? Burger King lets you "have it your way. Your local car dealer is usually not quite so customer friendly. A typical ready‐to‐buy car shopper may walk into the dealership with an idea of how much he or she wants to spend and which features the car should inc1ude for that price. Many dealers will order a customized vehicle for a customer, but such an order usually adds six to eight weeks to the transaction. The customer who wants to buy on the spot must choose from cars on the lot that the manufacturer has already configured, priced, and shipped. Despite manufacturer incentives and rebates to entice customers to purchase, dealers often have a glut of new cars sitting in their lots for months at a time that no one wants to buy. The swollen inventory and slow turnaround hurt dealers because they must borrow money to pay for the cars the manufacturers ship. AutoNation, the largest chain of car dealers in the United States, is no exception. With near1y $18 billion in annual revenue, AutoNation is the leading seller of automobiles in the country. The company has 244 dealerships in 16 states and sells four percent of all new cars sold in the United States. But it, too, has excessive inventory that it can't easily sell. The upsurge in gasoline prices coupled with a weakened U.S. economy have made the problem even worse. U.S. dealers' lots are bulging with unsold gas‐guzzling pickup trucks and SUVS. Detroit auto makers have lost even more market...

Words: 968 - Pages: 4

Can Detroit Make Cars Customers Want

...and when the package should arrive. Customers can download and print their own labels using special software provided by UPS or by accessing the UPS website. Before the package is even picked up information from the ‘smart’ label is transmitted to one of UPS’s computer centers in Mahwah, New Jersey or Alpharetta, Georgia, and sent to the distribution center nearest its final destination. Dispatchers at this center download the label data and use special software to create the most efficient delivery route for each driver that considers traffic, weather conditions, and the location of each stop. This technology addresses the UPS strategy of taking services to the customers in order words placing the customer first and making label accessible as possible. Instead of customers visiting the premises of UPS to get scannable they can do this by downloading it in the comfort of their homes through the UPS website. Another strategy the technology adopted by UPS addresses is identifying the most efficient route for delivering packages. UPS estimates its delivery trucks save 28 million miles and burn 3 million fewer gallons of fuel each year using this technology. Clearly, the technology used by UPS is ensuring finest service at lowest price thereby keeping stakes high in terms of competition, competence and revenue. The first thing a UPS driver picks up each day, the handheld computer called a Delivery Information Acquisition Device (DIAD), which can access one of the wireless......

Words: 1303 - Pages: 6

How Can Customers Needs and Wants Impact Marketing?

...Class Discussion Week 1 How Can customers needs and wants impact marketing? Marketing merely reflects and shapes the needs and wants of customers. Relationship marketing communicates the idea that a major goal of marketing is to build long-term relationships with the customers contributing to the firm’s success (Babin & Zikmund, 2010). We as people and customers all have needs and wants, this is just part of who we are as human beings. Companies will strive to satisfy these functions and keep doing so by advertising to let the people know they are around and can provide the products they need. Customer’s needs vary depending on the region they live in. Someone living in the U.S. my need food but want fries, hamburger and a soft drink and a person that lives in Mauritius that needs food may want a mango, rice, lentils and beans (Lynch, 2011). With there being different groups and classes of people who have various wants and needs, marketers must continually be creating and developing attractive products and devising brilliant marketing strategies to win the consumer over. We as people like consistency and if a marketer provides consistent service in addition to great products and price then the customers will keep coming back for years to come. This is all part of what a customer’s expectations on a product are. Zikmund, W.G., & Babin, B.J. (2010). Exploring Marketing Research. 10th Ed. Chapter 1: The Role of Marketing Research. Keeping Customers and Building......

Words: 282 - Pages: 2