Phil LeBeau is a CNBC auto and airline industry reporter based at the network's Chicago bureau. He is also editor of the Behind the Wheel section on CNBC.com.
LeBeau has reported one-hour documentaries for the network, including "Dreamliner: Inside the World's Most Anticipated Airplane," "Ford: Rebuilding an American Icon" and "Saving General Motors" and "Failure to Recall: Investigating GM."
Prior to joining CNBC, LeBeau served as a media relations specialist for Van Kampen Funds in Oak Brook Terrace, Ill., and was instrumental in implementing an initiative to communicate the company's mutual fund and investment practices to the public and the press. While at Van Kampen, LeBeau held a Series 6 license.
Previously, he held general assignment reporting positions at KCNC-TV, the CBS affiliate in Denver, and KAKE-TV, the ABC affiliate in Wichita, Kan. LeBeau began his career as a field producer at WCCO-TV in Minneapolis, where he wrote, produced and researched consumer stories. He graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Journalism with a bachelor's degree in journalism and broadcasting.
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Reporters and editors are already calling Ford's third quarter earnings surprising. And yes, it is surprising when analysts are expecting a company to lose 12 cents a share, and it earns 26 cents/share. But make no mistake; the blue oval has been going from red (losing money) to black (making money) for some time.
Just a few weeks into her job as the head of sales at GM, Susan Docherty believes the automaker is building momentum. Wednesday morning Docherty updated reporters on what the company is seeing for October sales.
The latest Consumer Reports survey of people who have bought more than 1.4 million vehicles, is further proof of the gulf between Ford and its fellow Big 3 auto makers, GM and Chrysler. While Consumer Reports now lists Ford as being on par with Asian automakers, GM and Chrysler continue to struggle.
The White House will herald it as proof America's auto industry is changing. Leaders in Washington will say this is the blue print for taking the shrinking big 3 and putting their abandoned plants to good use. For all the "feel good" cheer surrounding the announcement a former GM plant in Delaware will be renovated to build high-end hybrid cars, keep the hype in check.
The Tokyo Motor Show is a case study in the electric car split. Some companies, like Nissan are trumpeting future EV models and talking about the coming age of electric vehicles.
Almost 7 months after President Obama decided to save both GM and Chrysler by sending them through bankruptcy, it's becoming clear just how close the White House came to letting Chrysler go under and how little the auto task force thought of GM.
The beauty of the X PRIZE is that it highlights a growing, but largely overlooked segment of inventors and entrepreneurs who are building cars that do not run on gas or diesel. These are folks experimenting with batteries, ethanol, even algae as the fuel to power our cars ad trucks.
For all the stories I do involving the auto industry, I'm always amazed at how many people will bring up how the auto makers pick the colors for future models and why some of those colors are popular in one part of the country, but not in another.
The Fiesta is a compact car that has been a huge hit in Europe and has been the focal point of Ford's strategy to crank out smaller, more fuel efficient models for customers in the US...But in a crowded market with strong competitors in the compact segment, Ford knows it will still have to work to make the Fiesta a big seller.
Dealers are riding a used car bull market.
Fir Tree Partners stepped up its calls to replace Hertz's chief, saying CEO Mark Frissora "has completely lost credibility."
General Motors' premium Cadillac group is considering expanding its offices from Detroit to Manhattan.
More people will get away this Labor Day weekend than have in the past six years, reports USA Today.
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