Retail

Sears continues to dismantle your childhood memories with sale of DieHard battery brand

Customers shop at Chicago's last remaining Sears store on May 3, 2018 in Chicago, Illinois. The store, which opened in 1938, closed in July 2018. Sears opened its first retail store in Chicago in 1925.

Photo by Getty Images

Do you remember the smell of freshly painted metal Kenmore appliances? Tiles floors with remnants of cardboard packaging stuck on the bottom corners of display racks? The sound of the mall's waterfall welcoming customers to the store's entrance?

Slowly but surely, financially-challenged Sears is selling off parts of your childhood. Left and right, the box box retailer has been closing stores. In 2017, Sears sold the Craftsman brand for $900 million to Stanley Black & Decker Inc. Now, the retailer has sold the DieHard car battery brand to Advance Auto Parts for $200 million.

"We are excited to acquire global ownership of an iconic American brand," said Tom Greco, president and CEO, Advance Auto Parts. "DieHard will help differentiate Advance, drive increased DIY customer traffic and build a unique value proposition for our Professional customers and Independent Carquest partners. DieHard has the highest brand awareness and regard of any automotive battery brand in North America and will enable Advance to build a leadership position within the critical battery category."

In 2005, Sears merged with K-Mart. K-Mart, once a staple of midsize towns across the U.S., is having its own difficulties and will be reduced to just over 50 locations by early 2020. As part of its efforts to become profitable, Sears will operate under 200 stores in the U.S. by early 2020.

Both companies are now subsidiaries of Transform Holdco LLC, a privately held company that is owned by ESL Investments, a hedge fund managed by Eddie Lampert who formerly has previously served as the director of AutoNation and AutoZone.

This isn't the total end of Die Hard at Sears. The company will still be able to sell the batteries at its stores. Advance Auto Parts will also sell the batteries at its 4,800 stores. Advance Auto Parts also granted Transform Holdco LLC the exclusive ability to have a royalty-free, perpetual license to develop, market, and sell DieHard branded products in non-automotive categories.

Trending News

 
 

New subcompact crossover

Honda announces freshened HR-V for 2023

The new HR-V is based on the Civic.

Honda

With the release of the all-new Civic and its performance variants, Honda's lineup grew more exciting this year. Even so, the automaker can't forget about its bread and butter models, which in the United States means SUVs. Its smallest, the HR-V, is getting an overhaul for 2023 with fresh styling and a more responsive powertrain. Honda hasn't elaborated on pricing or given out an exact release date for the HR-V, but we know the SUV is coming this summer.

2023 Honda HR-VThe new HR-V gets fresh styling and a more responsive powertrain.Honda

The 2023 HR-V gets a new grille with a longer hood and sweeping roofline. Honda notes that the new HR-V is based on the Civic, so while we don't have full powertrain and tech details for the new SUV, we can draw some inferences from that information. The new Civic comes standard with a 158-horsepower four-cylinder engine and a CVT, which would be a reasonable choice for the HR-V. As it did in the Civic, the base will likely also bring a lively driving experience and confident handling to the HR-V.

2023 Honda HR-VThe HR-V will hit the streets this summer.Honda

Honda says the HR-V features a large greenhouse with door-mounted mirrors and a low cowl for better visibility. LED headlights and tail lights are standard, and the new rear-end design features a more rounded, grown-up shape than the previous model.

Trending News

 
 

New electric vehicles

Ford to release seven new EVs in Europe

Ford will release 7 new EVs in Europe over the next few years.

Ford Motor Motor Company

The Blue Oval is moving rapidly toward an all-electric future, both at home here in the U.S., and abroad. Today, Ford Europe announced the development of seven new EV models to be released across the continent in the coming years, including passenger vehicles and vans. Ford believes its annual EV sales in Europe to surpass 600,000 units by 2026, and notes that it will sell more than two million EVs worldwide by that time.

Ford Cologne, GermanyFord has big plans for its European production facilities. Ford Motor Company

Ford says it will offer seven new electric vehicles in Europe by 2025, and starting in 2023, the automaker will begin producing a new electric passenger car and a midsize electric crossover. Both will be built in Ford's Cologne, Germany facility, and will be joined by another EV in 2024. Additionally, the best-selling Ford Puma will go electric in 2024.

To help achieve these goals, Ford is partnering with Turkish company Koç. The deal creates a joint venture in Turkey to manufacture Nickel NMC cells for battery production. Production will start as soon as 2025, and will reach an annual battery production capacity of 30 to 45 Gigawatt hours. Ford's Craiova, Romania facility will also contribute, helping with production of the Puma and other commercial vehicles.

Trending News