Jim Mateja


A long-time veteran of the auto beat, Jim is based in Chicago and covers new product, sales, marketing and management issues.

Illinois Dealers Get OK to Hike Fee
Retailers get a $2.16 hike, or 1.3%, in the paperwork fee they can charge to new-car buyers in 2015.
Tougher Ad Rules on Books for Chicago Auto Dealers 
The changes reduce the time dealerships have to correct violations in their ads and tighten the standards under which a violating dealer is referred to the Illinois attorney generalʼs office for discipline.
Chrysler Sees AWD as Key Selling Point of New 200  3
The automaker expects the take rate to exceed 15% in the snowbelt.
Dodge Rakes in Early Orders for Hellcat Lineup 
“We hope it will grow traffic to Dodge showrooms, where people can see how much better Dodge has become,” Brand Manager Bob Broderdorf says.
Isuzu Won’t Play Role in GM’s Next-Gen U.S. Pickups 
Even with tougher fuel-economy rules coming into play, officials apparently don’t believe future U.S. demand could be served with a pickup designed primarily for emerging markets.
Buyers Line Up Quickly for Corvette Z06 
GM drew 5,600 orders for the high-performance car in its first week on sale, more than the automaker can build for ’15, the car’s chief engineer says.
Ford Marketers Tout ’15 Edge’s Technological Edge 
While not yet offering Wi-Fi hot-spot capability like most new GM vehicles, the Edge boasts unique technology such as unassisted parallel parking and the ability to pop open the hatch lid by simply swiping a foot under the rear bumper.
Upgraded Escalade a Hit With Repeat, Conquest Buyers 
Escalade owners are young enough to keep buying and wealthy enough to afford to keep buying, chief marketer Todd Brown says.
Subaru in Capacity Crunch as 600,000 U.S. Sales ‛Feasible’
The ascendant Japanese brand will have to wait another two years before additional capacity comes on line at its sole U.S. plant in Lafayette, IN.
Jeep Sets Big Plans for Smallest Model 8
Four-wheel drive and open-top motoring potential will set the new Renegade apart from the competition in the growing B-size CUV segment, officials believe.
Early Indicators of OnStar 4G LTE Take-Rate Positive, GM Says
All but three GM vehicles will offer Wi-Fi capability for ’15, meaning anything people can do with their laptop, tablet or smartphone at home or work can be done in their vehicle.
Hyundai Weighing Consumer Response to ’15 Sonata 1
“The feedback we get is that the car looks conservative when you see it in pictures but looks better in person,” says Mike O’Brien, vice president-corporate and product planning.
Murano Production Launch Leads Nissan’s U.S. Agenda 
Canton production marks the first time since the Murano bowed in 2003 that it will be built outside Japan.
Chrysler, Dodge Execs Confident in Brand-Shifting Strategy 
Making Dodge a performance-oriented marque doesn’t mean volumes will decline, says brand CEO Tim Kuniskis. “We sold 100,000 Dodge Chargers last year, and that's high volume,” he tells WardsAuto.
Flat Rock to Get Back Up to Speed, Ford Exec Says
Once the new Mustang is launched, Flat Rock can more effectively balance its production mix, the auto maker says.


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