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New NADA chairman Lutz outlines goals, focus areas for 2018

April 6, 2018
Personal vehicle ownership is stronger than ever and auto dealers will continue to bring exciting, inspiring, life-changing products to their customers, just like they’ve have been doing for the last 100 years, Wes Lutz said in his first official address as 2018 chairman of the National Automobile Dealers Association.
"It’s true, technology makes sharing a car more convenient than ever. But, what the naysayers forget is that technology also makes owning a car better than it used to be," said Lutz, who has been a dealer since 1976. "Auto dealers are going to sell the vast majority of electric cars (that are) sold. … The automobile is the most exciting platform for innovation in the next 100 years."
A Michigan dealer, Lutz outlined his priorities and focus for his coming year as chairman, including advocating new-car dealer concerns within the industry, and in the legislative and regulatory affairs arenas as well. Lutz said he will also encourage dealers to continue adapting to the retailing challenges ahead.
"Just because a new system pops up doesn’t mean the ‘old one’ is dead. Just because technology changes, it doesn’t mean that a car’s usefulness is gone," Lutz said. At almost every turn, dealers have faced challenges — some major ones. But our troubles didn’t define us. How we responded to them did."
As car ownership continues to break records — global sales of 90 million in 2017, Lutz noted — auto dealers have a role to play in the future of the industry, investing in new franchises, new facilities, and new technologies.