Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 10

OPINION

10

05.18

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EV sales quota: Quebec puts
its money where its mouth is
The best advice for handing over the keys to family members
might be to "treat kids fairly" instead of equally.

Dealers, it's time
for the tough talk
JEFF MELNYCHUK

|

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

NEVER DO BUSINESS WITH FAMILY, ISN'T THAT THE OLD SAYING?
And then along comes succession planning, with its potential
hard feelings, bad deals, lawsuits, nepotism-gone-awry and ruined
trust.
Never do business with family? Succession planning for dealer
principals and their families takes that logical and time-honoured
saying and sets it on fire.
With proper succession planning,
The longer dealer
there doesn't have to be a lifetime of
principals wait to have bickering and drama with family, but
feature stories on Pages 4 and 5
a conversation about our
make it abundantly clear that the lonsuccession planning, ger it takes to have THE conversation,
the more difficult it
the worse it's likely to be.
But what is "proper?"
will likely be
In our feature, four dealers tell four
completely different stories of their
experiences, proving that there's no right path, just the right conversation. Dealers ignoring their mortality, or those simply avoiding
potential conflict, are also ignoring the needs of their families.
"A lot of dealers don't want to think about their ultimate
demise," said Charles Seguin, president of Seguin Advisory
Services in the stories on Page 4. "They're constantly trying to
increase the business, but they don't look after the family that
they're trying to create wealth for."
According to the story, a whopping 43 per cent of "family firms"
do not have a succession plan in place. "Add to that the particularities of the automotive business, and a long-term plan becomes
critical, especially if the intent is to hand the business over to one
or more children."
Complications seem most likely when there are multiple siblings trying to pass the reins to multiple children when only some
of them are actually interested in - and even then might not be
capable of - running the family business. Newfoundland dealer
Rick O'Neill sums up the relationship with his brother on Page 5:
"They say you should never say never, but I would be shocked if it
ever repaired itself."
So, how does one do business with family when we're told to
never mix the two? There's obviously a lot of ground to cover, but
the simple advice given by John Firstbrook, CEO of the Firstbrook
Group of Companies, might be the best.
"Most parents want to treat their kids equally. The better idea
is to treat them fairly."
If you're a dealer principal, don't delay the inevitable. Please
take a close look at Pages 4 and 5 of this issue. - ANC

EST. 1925.

PUBLISHED WEEKLY BY CRAIN COMMUNICATIONS, INC.
KEITH E. CRAIN, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
K.C. CRAIN, GROUP PUBLISHER
JASON STEIN, PUBLISHER

DAVE VERSICAL, DIRECTOR OF EDITORIAL OPERATIONS, AUTOMOTIVE NEWS GROUP

PUBLISHED MONTHLY BY CRAIN COMMUNICATIONS, INC.

NEWS DEPARTMENT

JEFF MELNYCHUK, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, 506.854.5024, JMelnychuk@autonews.com
DAVE GUILFORD, MANAGING EDITOR, 313.446.0321, Dguilford@crain.com

CUSTOMER SERVICE

877.812.1257
Email: customerservicecanada@autonews.com

AD SALES

Karen Rentschler, 313.446.6031
Email: Krentschler@crain.com

A LOT OF PEOPLE - AND I'M
one of them - frowned upon
Quebec's provincial mandate
that 3.5 per cent of an automaker's total sales in 2018
must be zero-emission vehicles.
I'm with Mark Nantais, president of the Canadian
Automobile Manufacturers
Association.
"You can't force supply for
which there's no demand," he
told Automotive News Canada
in September.
He's probably right, but you
have to give the Quebec government credit; it's certainly trying to force the demand.
One only needs to look at a
trio of online stories out of La
Belle Province in the last month
or so.
First, the City of Montreal
purchased 100 new 2018
Nissan Leaf electric vehicles.
They are to be added to city's
municipal fleet, which at the
end of the year should stand at
about 230 vehicles. That's
nearly 13 times the number of
EVs it owned in 2015.
Since the Leaf's Canadian
launch in 2011, Nissan says
about 50 per cent of the sales
have been in Quebec.

DIGITAL AND
MOBILE EDITOR
AUTOMOTIVE
NEWS CANADA

GREG
LAYSON

COMMENT
Thirty-five kilometres northwest of Montreal, the City of
Laval is doing its part to spur
sales of ZEVs: It will soon offer
its residents $2,000 to buy
EVs, making it the first
Canadian municipality to do so.
Laval is getting the money
from revenue generated
through a specific environmental program it started in 2011.

The City of Montreal is setting the tone for EV sales
quotas by buying 100 Nissan
Leafs. P H O T O : N I S S A N

Laval collects fees to offset
greenhouse-gas emissions
related to commercial- and residential-development projects in
the city. The cash will come
from the reserve of the program.
The $2,000 is in addition to
the $8,000 incentive already
offered by the provincial government.
And that's not all.
Three taxi companies in the
Montreal area have banded
together, calling on the Quebec
government to offer a $5,000
subsidy to taxi companies that
purchase EVs.
If the government obliges
the trio, which represents 80
per cent of the taxi drivers in
the region, it would mean EVs
purchased for taxi use would be
eligible for up to $13,000 in
rebates, which includes that
$8,000 already available to the
general public.
While none of these things
on their own will help automakers reach that mandated sales
target of 3.5 per cent, taken
together they might just make a
difference and lead to similar
policies elsewhere in the province. - ANC

Carlisle: Cadillac's new driver
IT'S NATURAL TO PONDER WHAT THE DEPARTURE
The Evoq's lines found their way into future
of Steve Carlisle means for General Motors
Cadillacs, most notably the CTS. The XLR
Canada. But it's also revealing to look at why
two-seater was a direct descendent of the Evoq.
Carlisle's performance in Canada made him the
Seemingly fixated on BMW, GM engineers ran
choice to take over Cadillac.
new vehicles through laps on
As Carlisle heads to New York
Germany's brutal Nurburgring
MANAGING
City to head the Cadillac brand,
race course and called out
EDITOR
Travis Hester, formerly vice-presiBMW's 3 series in advertising.
dent for global product programs,
Over time, Cadillac won some
DAVE
moves into the CEO job at GM
respect from reviewers for its
GUILFORD
Canada.
improved performance.
Frankly, Cadillac needs what
Even so, the breakthrough into
Carlisle can bring.
the front ranks of luxury brands
COMMENT
The brand is currently
didn't happen. What's more, the
approaching the 20th year of a
focus on sedans now seems
fitful brand revival that can be traced to the
woefully off-target, as luxury crossovers proliferate.
appearance of the sharp-edged Evoq concept car
How is it, for instance, that both Chevrolet and
at the 1999 Detroit auto show. That vehicle was a
Buick have compact crossovers, but Cadillac
radical departure from the production Cadillacs of
doesn't? Many of its luxury competitors do, includthe day: big cars that, apart from the distinctive
ing archrival Lincoln.
vertical taillights, didn't look enormously different
Meanwhile, outgoing Cadillac President Johan
from GM's Chevrolets, Oldsmobiles and Buicks.
de Nysschen pushed Project Pinnacle, resetting
Cadillac followed through on the design theme,
sales and other dealership performance objectives
as well as the technology stuffed into the car,
in an attempt to get a European tone of luxury
such as night vision, a rear-obstacle detection sysinto the stores. As valid as that goal may have
tem and a V-8 engine with variable valve timing.
been, de Nysschen had chilly relations with
Cadillac dealers as the brand struggled with an
out-of-date lineup and sagging sedan sales.
To be fair to de Nysschen, he said that reinventing Cadillac's image and vehicle lineup was a
long-term project. But GM's brass apparently ran
out of patience.
Enter Steve Carlisle. He steered GM Canada
back from its post-bankruptcy slump, running
neck-and-neck today with Ford as Canada's sales
champ. And as our story in this issue says, he is
well-liked by GM's dealers in Canada.
Carlisle will benefit from plans to add crossovers to Cadillac's lineup, starting with the XT4
compact coming this year. But he's lining up
Cadillac has lagged its competitors getting
against tough competition to target some very
a small utility vehicle to market. Can Steve
demanding customers. Carlisle will need all his
Carlisle drive Cadillac's XT4 to sales
metal-moving and dealer-diplomacy skills in his
success? P H O TO : G E N E R A L M O TO R S
new gig. - ANC



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2

Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - Intro
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 1
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 2
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 3
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 4
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 5
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 6
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 7
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 8
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 9
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 10
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 11
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 12
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 13
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 14
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 15
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 16
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 17
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 18
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 19
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 20
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 21
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 22
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 23
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 24
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 25
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 26
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 27
Automotive News Canada - May 2018 - v2 - 28
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