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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It's the one thing auto execs constantly worry about. Making sure the launch of a new or re-designed model hits the target. It sounds simple, but historically there are numerous cases where an auto maker puts a new car or truck in showrooms and it falls short of expectations. Sometimes woefully short.
Whatever you think, and I know many of you reading this believe the guy ran GM into the ground and is now gone so who cares about him, what Wagoner thinks remains a mystery. Ever since the White House fired him at the end of March, Wagoner has been silent. As GM went in and out of bankruptcy, he said nothing publicly.
Like the whirlwind trips in and out of bankruptcy for GM and Chrysler, Steve Rattner is leaving Washington just a few months after stepping into a high profile position with the Treasury Department. Rattner is leaving the Auto Task Force and heading back to private life in the investment world. Talk about making a splash and then getting out of town.
As GM emerges from bankruptcy Vice Chairman Bob Lutz, who had been scheduled to retire at the end of this year, will take over GM's marketing and communications. His mandate: change the perception of GM, its brands and models. Talk about taking on a tough job.
Now comes the hard part. After 39 days in bankruptcy, shedding thousands of jobs, closing more plants, and writing off billions in debt, GM is about to exit chapter 11 protection and try to show it can finally thrive. On paper it should succeed. In reality, it still has to prove itself.
When you have a car company going through the great unknown of bankruptcy, you take the good news when it pops up. For Chrysler, the good news is the way residual values for new Chrysler vehicles are not only holding up, but actually rebounding a bit from when the company first filed for bankruptcy. It is the kind of proof the supports the arguments from the White House and elsewhere that bankruptcy would help, not hurt, Chrysler and GM.
A NHTSA spokesperson said a further increase could follow in its massive air bag recall.
GM is notifying owners of some vehicles that passengers should not ride in the front passenger seat until the air bag inflator has been replaced.
The problems for Takata grew after U.S. safety regulators expanded a warning about faulty air bags to 6.1 million vehicles in the United States.
Mark Ellwood of CNBC’s “The Filthy Rich Guide” weighs in on tycoon Stephen Hung’s order of 30 Rolls-Royce Phantoms.
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