I cringe every time someone refers to a Toyota or BMW as a "foreign" car (often pronounced fah-rin). Here's why.
Whether you’re new to the automotive industry or a seasoned pro, identifying the best resources to keep a pulse on the industry–anywhere from a policy focus to a sales perspective–can be tricky. With our collective experience working in the auto industry, Be Car Chic has put together a list of the most trusted daily, weekly and monthly resources for an “auto”-filled inbox.
To help you narrow down the 10 best automotive newsletters to serve your needs, we’ve categorized them by automotive policy, green technology, product & sales, and industry-wide.
1. POLITICO Morning Transportation
Frequency: Daily | Focus: Capitol Hill, Transportation Policy Issues, Trade Association News and Reports
POLITICO is one of the ITB (Inside the Beltway) publications that Capitol Hill staffers and industry representatives rely on for inside information and news relating to their respective sectors. The pub’s Morning Transportation has become a linchpin for the D.C. auto community to receive policy-focused news relating to anything that drives, floats or flies.
2. AIADA First Up
Frequency: Daily | Focus: International Brands, Trade, Dealer Issues, Small Biz Issues
The American International Automobile Dealers Association (where Melanie cut her teeth running dealer advocacy programs) beats the drum on behalf of import-brand car dealers nationwide. Their daily newsletter First Up compiles the latest news, much of which has a policy-focused impact, with a pro trade, pro small family business lens.
If you want more of a sales focus from their perspective, then check out AIADA’s monthly Market Watch e-newsletter.
3. NADA Headlines
Frequency: Daily | Focus: All Car Brands, Dealer Issues, Sales, Small Biz Issues
The National Automobile Dealers Association may be best known by consumers for its little black book–the NADA Used Car Guide–but this large trade association has been working on behalf of car dealers on Capitol Hill for decades. Regardless of how you may feel about the lobbying powerhouse, NADA selects the most popular auto news stories and delivers it to your inbox daily.
NADA also recently hired Chief Economist Steve Szakaly, so if you’re more of a numbers person, then you may enjoy their ‘Market Beat’ monthly reports.
4. Green Car Reports
Frequency: Daily | Focus: Green Vehicles, Advanced Technologies, Tesla, Green Auto Policy Issues
Green Car Reports, led by the extremely knowledgeable editor John Voelcker, has been a go-to-for-green news source for Be Car Chic for years. We haven’t come across a more reputable site that discusses advanced tech vehicles like regular cars. The folks at GCR are car guys for the Teslas, i3’s and Priuses out there.
5. HybridCars.com Monthly Dashboard
Frequency: Monthly | Focus: Hybrids, Electric Vehicles, Green Vehicle Sales, Alternative Fuel Vehicles, Advanced Technologies
The HybridCars.com Monthly Market Dashboard has been a go-to for us to review data related to electrified vehicle sales. Compiled by editor, Jeff Cobb, this comprehensive run-down of the green car market provides a snapshot at how this sector is growing (currently hovering around 3-4 percent of the total industry). Admittedly, some of the data is nebulous as manufacturers such as Tesla release data in an unpredictable manner, but Cobb does a great job of (pardon the pun) “cobbling” together the information that is available and making sense of it for those of us who aren’t number crunchers.
PRODUCT & SALES
6. Autoweek Daily Drive
Frequency: Daily | Focus: New Vehicle Launches, Car Reviews, Automaker News, Racing
This daily newsletter is a free back door to the top news from its Bible-of-the-Auto-Industry sibling, Automotive News. Autoweek gives readers the skinny on new vehicles in a digestible format, and they’re one of the major outlets to cover racing news as well.
7. The Detroit Bureau
Frequency: Varies | Focus: Auto Industry News, Domestic Brands, Auto Policy Issues
There’s a reason veteran automotive journalist Paul Eisenstein takes pole position at every automotive news conference—he wants to make sure he’s in the front row on every important automotive-related story. The Detroit Bureau takes an honest approach to covering autos and the site includes in-depth stories on just about every manufacturer and hot-topic issue facing the industry. Users can sign up for as-it-happens, daily, weekly or monthly news.
8. Automotive News
Frequency: Varies | Focus: Auto Industry News, Auto Industry Trends, Domestic and International Brands, Auto Policy Issues
Automotive News is a staple for this industry, covering just about every area possible through traditional journalism means. There are several newsletters that you can subscribe to without having to fork over the $150+ annual fee for the print subscription, although that is a valuable weekly delivery for those working in the industry. There’s still something about leafing through a print publication with your morning coffee.
Frequency: Varies | Focus: Auto Manufacturers, Auto Sales, Auto Industry Trends, Data and Research
WardsAuto is an industry leader in automotive news related to sales and sales trends, as well as data research. While much of the content on their site requires an annual subscription–most likely to be paid by a dealership or other company needing direct access to additional information–Wards offers a series of free newsletters; the topics range from manufacturer news to dealer service and nearly everything in between.
10. Google Alerts
Frequency: Varies | Focus: Anything and Everything
Ok it’s not a newsletter, but it can truly feed you the information you’re in search of–and do so by-the-minute. Set up Google Alerts for specific issues, automakers, topics and more. These can be delivered to your inbox anywhere from “as it happens” to “weekly.” Establish a broad topic if you’re looking for news clippings to share through social channels or narrow it down. There’s no limit to how many you can have, so experiment with several keywords to see what provides the best results.
Editor’s note & disclaimer: As editor and founder of Be Car Chic, I find it important to disclose that I previously worked directly with some of the policy-focused organizations listed here, either as an employee or as a consultant providing strategic communications consulting services. I include these organizations without bias, but as a resource for those looking to get additional information about the auto industry from various perspectives.
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