Sonari Glinton

Sonari Glinton is a NPR Business Desk Correspondent based at our NPR West bureau. He covers the auto industry, consumer goods, and consumer behavior, as well as marketing and advertising for NPR and Planet Money.

In this position, which he has held since late 2010, Glinton has tackled big stories including GM's road back to profitability and Toyota's continuing struggles. In addition, Glinton covered the 2012 presidential race, the Winter Olympics in Sochi, as well as the U.S. Senate and House for NPR.

Glinton came to NPR in August 2007 and worked as a producer for All Things Considered. Over the years Glinton has produced dozen of segments about the great American Song Book and pop culture for NPR's signature programs most notably the 50 Great Voices piece on Nat King Cole feature he produced for Robert Siegel.

Glinton began his public radio career as an intern at Member station WBEZ in Chicago. He worked his way through his public radio internships working for Chicago Jazz impresario Joe Segal, waiting tables and meeting legends such as Ray Brown, Oscar Brown Jr., Marian MacPartland, Ed Thigpen, Ernestine Andersen, and Betty Carter.

Glinton attended Boston University. A Sinatra fan since his mid-teens, Glinton's first forays into journalism were album revues and a college jazz show at Boston University's WTBU. In his spare time Glinton indulges his passions for baking, vinyl albums, and the evolution of the Billboard charts.

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Ford Motor Company's new CEO, Jim Hackett has a pretty daunting job description: prepare Ford for a future of self-driving cars and keep things profitable by selling trucks. While Hackett has a unique set of skills, that's still an extremely tall order.

Ford Motor Company is different than the other car companies.

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There are a lot of threads to the story of Ford Motor Company over the last several years. It avoided bankruptcy during the financial collapse. In the last few years, the company has enjoyed record sales and, with that, record profits.

After seven years of growth, the auto market is seeing weakness.

In April, sales were off by 4.7 percent. That's despite the continued robust sales of highly profitable SUVs and trucks. That's no big deal for an industry that just got off of two record seasons, but not so for investors.

The pain is being felt across the auto world.

Most car buyers don't do more than the most perfunctory test drive of new or used cars. But with so much new technology and features in today's cars and trucks, a thorough test drive is more important than ever.

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Some auto shows are about fuel economy, some are about design and style. The New York International Auto Show that opens this weekend is about horsepower.

The average Honda Civic, for example, has about 150 horsepower — which is plenty.

Fiat Chrysler just introduced the Dodge Demon. It has 840 horses revving under the hood.

Why do drivers need cars with so much vroom?

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If you make, sell or drive a car, today President Trump has news for you.

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Car designers are a type. They stand out from the engineers, accountants and lawyers that populate the car business. By all accounts, Ed Welburn, General Motors' first global head of design, is quiet, focused and congenial. This year, he retired after 44 years at GM.

President-elect Donald Trump took to Twitter on Thursday night to say Ford Motor Co. executive chairman William Ford Jr. had called to say the company would not move production of the Lincoln MKC from its Louisville Assembly Plant to Mexico.

A second Trump tweet claimed credit for the decision.

Ford, however, said it neither planned to close the Louisville, Ky., plant nor reduce jobs there. The company said it had considered moving Lincoln production to Mexico to increase production of the Ford Escape in Louisville.

As iconic as the brand Smith & Wesson is, the name is not expansive enough for the company's ambitions. Smith & Wesson Holding Corp. is asking its shareholders to approve changing the name to American Outdoor Brands Corp. But its firearms will keep their famous name.

The company says it will likely change its ticker symbol to AOBC from the current SWHC. The name change has already been approved by the company's board of directors. Shareholders get a vote on Dec. 13, according to a statement from the company.

General Motors appears to have won the October sales race among the big automakers. GM saw its sales fall by just 1.7 percent in October. It has good company in those sales declines, being joined by nearly all the other carmakers. Overall, automobile sales in the U.S. are expected to drop between 6 and 8 percent when all the reports are in.

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