This is the Morning Shift, our one-stop daily roundup of all the auto news that's actually important — all in one place at 9:00 AM. Or, you could spend all day waiting for other sites to parcel it out to you one story at a time. Isn't your time more important?
1st Gear: Ferrari Wants To Only Sell Its New Very Special Cars To Very Special People
Ferrari is planning a collector's club to give its most loyal customers a better chance of owning new Ferraris — a "first refusal" for special edition prancing ponies. The club likely will be open only to people who possess at least five Ferraris — a worldwide base of about 300 collectors. "I don't want our faithful collectors to miss the opportunity to buy one of our special series," Ferrari CEO Luca Cordero di Montezemolo said in an interview with Automotive News Europe. So, basically, like what airlines now do with first class upgrades, they're just looking to codify their current practice of preferentialism of the 1%. Or, I guess, in this case — the top 1% of the top 1% of the top 1%. But what about the mere millionaires who one day dream of owning a Ferrari? Screw the poors!
2nd Gear: We Always Knew Jeep Wranglers Were A Good "Investment"
Are you one of those people who believes that a car has to have a good "resale" value? Do you think cars are an "investment." If so, you're doing it wrong. But whatever, if that's the case, then the 2012 Jeep Wrangler, with a predicted residual of 55% of the purchase price, will hold its value better in five years than any other vehicle, according to Kelley Blue Book's 2012 best resale value awards. See the rest of the top ten here. And yes, there is at least one surprise on the list.
3rd Gear: All Your Car Sales Are Belong To Volkswagen
When Volkswagen announced five years ago plans to become the world's top carmaker by 2018, the goal seemed a bit ambitious — even for a automaker founded under the flag of nationalism. Toyota was just closing in on General Motors, the industry leader for more than 70 years. Now, years ahead of even VW's expectations, Volkswagen has risen into the top ranks. And now, this year, according to the Detroit News — depending on how we count vehicles sold by their Chinese subsidiary — it will be the world's largest carmaker with projected sales of more than eight million vehicles.
4th Gear: Fiat Probably Won't Make Chrysler Fully Its Bitch In 2012
Fiat Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne said both that he's "cautious" on the outlook for profit margins next year, and that a full-on merger with Chrysler is not on the agenda for 2012. Instead, he's just going to continue propping up Fiat with Chrysler's positive post-bankruptcy cash flow. Marchionne, who's also CEO of Chrysler, also said he expects a "great year" for the U.S. car market in an interview in London reported by Bloomberg.
5th Gear: Mary Kay Gives Man A Pink Cadillac For First Time
For the first time, Mary Kay is awarding a pink Cadillac to a man. The proud pink car driver is Jim Cundiff from Garden City, MI was awarded the most coveted award Mary Kay can present to their salespeople. "You're familiar with the Stanley Cup or the Heisman Trophy, that's basically what the pink Cadillac represents, I get the privilege to drive this car," Cundiff said in an interview with WDIV in Detroit. Awardees get the car for two years.
6th Gear: Suzuki Still Doesn't Want To Be Volkswagen's Bitch
Volkswagen again rejected an effort by Suzuki to force the automaker to end a two-year-old global partnership that hasn't yielded a single result. According to Bloomberg, Suzuki said today — again — that it terminated the cooperation agreement and demanded that VW sell back its 19.9% stake in the Japanese manufacturer, threatening to take the dispute to an international court for arbitration. "The glass is broken," said Arndt Ellinghorst, a London- based analyst with Credit Suisse to Bloomberg. "I don't see any reason why VW should not sell its stake back to Suzuki" as there seems little chance of repairing the relationship." The two companies have been at odds since VW described Suzuki as an "associate" in its 2010 annual report, published in March. I can't imagine why they'd be upset about basically being called VW's "bitch."
⏎ Nascar crowd boos First Lady Michelle Obama. [Breitbart]
⏎ Former GM chairman and P&G CEO John Smale dies at 84. [AP via Detroit News]
⏎ GM will trim ad agencies, media buyers. [Automotive News]
⏎ Even grilled cheese thrills in L.A. [The Province]
⏎ Next Jeep Liberty: More Carlike, Front-Drive Based, Fiat Engines, Coming in 2014. [Car & Driver]
⏎ Nano upgrade: more at same price but where are the buyers? [FirstPost]
⏎ Ohio City Home to Jeep Sees Auto Industry Revived. [AP via ABC News]
⏎ Toyota restores Japan output to "near-normal levels". [BBC News]
⏎ BMW And Hyundai Partner On Next-Gen Vehicle Connectivity. [Motor Authority]
⏎ Chevrolet to help refurbish youth baseball complex in Detroit. [AP via Detroit News]
⏎ New Dodge small car won't be called "Hornet." [Detroit News]
Today in Automotive History:
On this day in 1927, Time magazine puts the week-old Holland Tunnel on its cover. The tunnel, which runs under the Hudson River between New York City and Jersey City, New Jersey, had opened to traffic the week before, at the stroke of midnight on November 13. (Earlier that day, President Calvin Coolidge had ceremonially opened the tunnel from his yacht on the Potomac by turning the same key that had "opened" the Panama Canal in 1915-Time called it "the golden lever of the Presidential telegraphic instrument"-which rang a giant brass bell at the tunnel's entrances.) On that first day, 51,694 vehicles traveled through the tunnel. [History]
Got tips for our editors? Want to anonymously dish some dirt on a competitor? Know something about a secret car? Email us at email@example.com.