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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The folks at Car and Driver Magazine have now documented just dangerous it can be. Rigging a car with a red light to alert drivers when to brake, the magazine tested how long it takes to hit the brake when sober, when legally drunk at .08, when reading and e-mail, and when sending a text. The results are scary.
They've been jockeying for position for some time. But this morning, auto makers around the world will take big steps in the race to build mass market electric cars. When Energy Secretary Steven Chu announces grants for the development of fuel efficient vehicles and technologies, Ford, Nissan and Tesla will be the immediate beneficiaries.
It is an idea that has been floating around Detroit among those in the auto industry. Should General Motors change its name? When I first heard this question, I chuckled and thought, "Would it really be wise to throw out a well known name after 100 mostly successful years?"
The bill would give people a voucher for $3,500 to $4,500 if they turn in their old car or truck for new fuel efficient model built in North America. On paper it sounds good. In reality, the number of people who may actually benefit from this program could be extremely limited.
Ford CEO Alan Mulally has been saying it ever since he took over the blue oval. Ford Chairman Bill Ford Jr. has been backing the idea for just as long. Now we'll see if the company that got a lot of Americans hooked on SUVs (and made billions of dollars in the process) can be successful with fuel efficient cars and crossovers.
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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