Scarpelli highlights importance of vehicle affordability

In his farewell remarks at NADA Show, 2017 NADA Chairman Mark Scarpelli praised fellow dealers for their successful advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill in Washington to preserve vehicle affordability.


“Vehicle affordability is the air we breathe,” Scarpelli said at NADA Show’s opening session. “Affordability is everything. Americans need cars – affordable cars – more than ever. If there’s one group that got that message loud and clear, it was the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.”


In 2013, the CFPB issued an auto lending directive that threatened to eliminate a dealer’s flexibility to offer consumers discounted rates on auto loans.


“We knew something that everyone else failed to see: Consumers won’t be buying cars tomorrow if they can’t afford them today,” Scarpelli said.


NADA also pushed last year to stop overly broad recall legislation, said Scarpelli.


“This legislation would have created a consumer trade-in tax for every recalled car on the road – even the ones with only minor defects,” he said. “We averted legislation that could have cost consumers on average $1,200.”


A third issue on which NADA and its dealers pushed hard was tax reform. Congressional legislation that was signed into law last December preserved 100 percent deductibility on floor plan loans, increased the estate tax exemption, and preserved the LIFO accounting method and advertising deductibility.


“The stakes for our businesses are enormous,” Scarpelli said., “When taxes increase, jobs at dealerships decrease, our capital investments decrease, and prices for consumers increase.”


As for factory relations, Scarpelli said he made it his personal mission as NADA chairman to reach automakers about “the “elephant in the room, also known as stair-step incentive programs.”

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