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Local News / 2009 NAIAS

Friday, 19 December, 2008 3:15 AM

NAIAS Senior Co-Chair Joe Serra Discusses Dealer Network, Auto Show Changes at the Detroit Economic Club

PHOTO BY MIKE ISMAIR / ©AMERICAJR.com

Joe Serra addresses the Detroit Economic Club on December 18, 2008.

by Garrett Godwin
ggodwin82@yahoo.com

 

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DETROIT -- Joe Serra was the final speaker this year for the Detroit Economic Club at COBO Center late Thursday morning, which concides with the reveal of the six finalists for the Car and Truck of the Year Awards of the 2009 North American International Auto Show. The winners will be revealed on January 11 -- almost less than a week before the public opening of the event going on from January 17-January 25.

Serra, the Co-Chairman of the NAIAS, was also the speaker of the last 2008 DEC meeting, where his key points included that there'll be an Auto Show here in the Motor City in the new year because of its great economic impact, having media all over the world attending, and most of all, it "represents the best of times."

"The Auto Show", he said, "is a place where the manufacturing industry comes together. Today is not a time to run but a time to come together". The key word, Serra continued, is efficiency.

Though calling himself both positive and optimistic, Serra also considers himself a realist, for he knows there are "dire times" in the automotive industry. Like everyone else, he was disheartened and shocked that the Senate rejected the automotive bailout loan yet knows that both Bush and Obama agreed that something must be done about this.

"The automotive industry and dealers," Serra commented, "has survived the Great Depression, several recessions, wars -- and even Ralph Nader. Like all crisis such as this, there'll be winners and losers."

"Among all the changes we've seen in this industry over the decade", he goes on, "one thing hasn't changed and doesn't change: human nature. Inherently, people enjoy engaging other people buying, selling, conducting business, building relationships. No matter how many cars we feature at the NAIAS, and no matter how many features those cars include, the business is still about people".

The meeting also included the live unveiling of the 2009 North American Car and Truck of the Year (NACTOY) finalists. The Ford Flex, Hyundai Genesis, and Volkswagon Jetta TDI are in the running for Car of the Year, and the Dodge Ram, Ford F150, and Mercedes Benz ML320 CDI are finalists for Truck of the Year.

 


PHOTO BY MIKE ISMAIR / ©AMERICAJR.com

About 750 people attended the special meeting of the DEC inside Cobo Center.

 

PHOTO BY MIKE ISMAIR / ©AMERICAJR.com

The Three "Truck of the Year" finalists for the 2009 NAIAS will be announced during the meeting.

 

PHOTO BY MIKE ISMAIR / ©AMERICAJR.com

The Three "Car of the Year" finalists will be announced during the meeting.

 

PHOTO BY MIKE ISMAIR / ©AMERICAJR.com

WDIV Local 4's Guy Gordon speaks to students from Edsel Ford High School.

 

PHOTO BY MIKE ISMAIR / ©AMERICAJR.com

Detroit Economic Club President & CEO Beth Chappell welcvomes everyone to the meeting.

 

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