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'60 Minutes' Doesn't Air Report on Dealer Markups

March 19, 2004

MCLEAN, Va.--According to the National Automobile Dealers Association, CBS News' "60 Minutes" pulled its report on dealer reserves that was scheduled for the March 21 broadcast. CBS cited "other news" as the reason.

The segment is expected to cover the class-action lawsuit against UnitedAuto Group's Covington Pike Toyota, in Memphis, Tenn. The suit alleges that customers weren't informed about dealer commissions and that steep markups unfairly drove up customers' financing terms.

One UnitedAuto Group executive was interviewed for the segment and explained that loan markups are often used to compensate dealerships for setting up loans.

NADA was also contacted by CBS regarding the story and explained to them the legitimacy of finance charges and also the priority of disclosure to customers. NADA offers its dealer members some guidelines if they are contacted by the media about this subject (www.nada.org/talkingpoints).

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