Sonari Glinton

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

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. Glinton has traveled throughout the Midwest covering important stories such as the tornado in Joplin, Missouri, and the 2012 presidential race. He has also covered the U.S. Senate and House for NPR.

Glinton came to NPR in August 2007 and worked as a producer for All Things Considered. During that time he produced interviews with everyone from UN Ambassador Susan Rice to Joan Rivers. The highlight for Glinton came when he produced Robert Siegel's 50 Great Voices piece on Nat King Cole.

Glinton began his public radio career as an intern at member station WBEZ in Chicago. He went on to produce and report for WBEZ. While in Chicago he focused on juvenile justice and the Cook County Board of Commissioners. Prior to journalism Glinton had a career in finance.

Glinton attended Boston University.

Pages

3:11pm

Mon July 28, 2014
Business

A Deal Between 'Dollar' Stores Raises The Stakes Against Wal-Mart

Originally published on Tue July 29, 2014 6:27 am

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Read more

3:53pm

Thu July 17, 2014
Business

Lawmakers Call For GM's Top Lawyer To Step Down

Originally published on Thu July 17, 2014 7:40 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

At a Senate hearing today, there were calls for General Motors top lawyer to step down. Recent media reports have made clear that company lawyers knew faulty ignition switches were causing fatal accidents. Despite that GM blocked internal efforts to issue a recall and they kept information from federal safety regulators. The ignition defect is responsible for at least 13 deaths and will cost GM billions of dollars. NPR's Sonari Glinton has the latest.

Read more

3:06pm

Wed July 2, 2014
Business

It's The Year Of The Recall, And It Finds GM Busy

Originally published on Wed July 2, 2014 6:20 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

From NPR News it's ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And I'm Robert Siegel. It's the year of recalls in the auto industry, especially for General Motors. This week GM announced another slew of them, bringing its total to 54 recalls this year. Other automakers are also recalling more vehicles, but it's at GM where the pace is so fast, that it's hard to keep track. But NPR's Sonari Glinton is keeping track and he now joins us to talk about how the company is handling all of these recalls. Hi, Sonari.

Read more

3:53pm

Mon June 30, 2014
Business

In GM's Payout Plan, End Of The Road Is A Long Way Off

Originally published on Mon June 30, 2014 6:01 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News I'm Melissa Block.

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

Read more

2:56am

Mon June 23, 2014
Business

As Carmakers Recall Vehicles, Dealers Might Make A Profit

Originally published on Fri June 27, 2014 4:20 am

Chevrolet dealerships like this one might actually benefit from General Motors' recall of millions of cars — as long as customers don't have to wait too long for their repairs.
Bill Pugliano Getty Images

The auto industry is cruising toward a record number of safety recalls: GM has recalled 20 million vehicles in the first six months of this year, and most carmakers have lowered the bar for the kind of problems that'll have them sending you back to your local dealers.

But while that sounds like bad news, it turns out that recalls can have an upside — at least for car dealers.

Read more

3:32pm

Wed June 18, 2014
Business

GM Chief Makes A Return Trip To The Hill, Where A Grilling Awaits

Originally published on Wed June 18, 2014 6:08 pm

General Motors CEO Mary Barra faced another grueling hearing on Capitol Hill, two weeks after a critical internal report blasted the company's handling of defective ignition switches as incompetent. GM has recalled 20 million vehicles already this year and has set aside $700 million to cover repairs related to the recall.

4:25pm

Tue June 10, 2014
Business

Cars Shed Pounds In Race To Meet Fuel-Efficiency Goals

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 7:31 pm

Ford says it cut the weight of its concept Fusion (left) by nearly 25 percent, matching the weight of a Ford Fiesta (right).
Ford

The car industry is required to raise the average fuel efficiency of its vehicles to 54.5 miles a gallon by 2025. But consumers have been reluctant to adopt hybrid technology that'll get the industry there quicker.

That means the car companies have to find other ways to get fuel savings.

If you were to guess, how important would you say fuel economy is to the car business? How much of the research and development is going into making cars more efficient?

Read more

3:16pm

Thu June 5, 2014
Business

Internal Probe Decries GM's 'Incompetence And Neglect'

Originally published on Thu June 5, 2014 6:58 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish. A blistering report was released today about why General Motors failed to recall millions of vehicles with a defective part - a faulty ignition switch that has been linked to at least 13 deaths. The report, prepared by a former U.S. attorney, details a pattern of incompetence and misconduct that reached the executive floors at the auto company. In response, GM has dismissed 15 employees and is creating a victims' compensation fund. NPR's Sonari Glinton reports from Detroit.

Read more

3:31pm

Wed May 28, 2014
Business

Google's Attempt To Make A Self-Driving Car: Big Idea Or Bad Idea?

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 5:17 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. Google is getting into the car business - the self-driving car business, that is. Google is throwing away the steering wheel in the pedals, building prototypes of a cozy two-seater designed for city driving.

Read more

5:11pm

Wed May 21, 2014
All Tech Considered

For Automakers, Internet-Connected Cars Are A Balancing Act

Originally published on Wed May 21, 2014 8:21 pm

General Motors says its OnStar 4G LTE connection will allow cars to act as a mobile Internet hub.
General Motors

The Internet is coming to your car. Later this year, General Motors will put Internet connectivity directly into its vehicles. It's the largest auto company to do so.

Of course, safety advocates have some concerns about more distractions for drivers.

The promise of technology is always the same one — that it's going to make our life easier. But anyone who's tried to make a hands-free call in the car knows that's not always true. A task as simple as asking your device to call your mom can be an exasperating experience.

Read more

3:01pm

Fri May 16, 2014
Business

Feds Slap GM With $35 Million Penalty For Safety Law Violations

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 7:00 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

And I'm Audie Cornish.

The federal government is hitting General Motors with its maximum fine for delays in an auto recall, $35 million. It's a response to GM's recall of cars with faulty ignition switches, a defect that's been linked to 13 deaths.

And as NPR's Sonari Glinton reports, today's agreement with the Department of Transportation won't close the books on the problem.

Read more

3:08pm

Wed April 9, 2014
News

Toyota Pulls Over 6 Million Vehicles Worldwide

Originally published on Wed April 9, 2014 5:48 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

Another major auto recall today, this time it's Toyota. The Japanese auto giant is recalling 6.4 million vehicles worldwide for a variety of defects, including problems with seat rails and airbags. No injuries have been reported. NPR's Sonari Glinton reports this particular recall is not happening in a vacuum.

Read more

2:42am

Tue April 8, 2014
Business

Just How New Is The 'New' GM?

Originally published on Tue April 8, 2014 8:34 am

CEO Mary Barra told Congress that she sits at the helm of the new GM. Is the company new and improved? The answer is complicated.
Evan Vucci AP

During her grilling before Congress last week, General Motors CEO Mary Barra insisted the new General Motors is different and better than the old one.

So as GM begins to fix nearly 2.6 million vehicles for an ignition-switch defect that has been linked to at least 13 deaths, we decided to put that claim to the test.

Exactly how new is the new GM?

NBC's Saturday Night Live answered with a parody version of Barra's explanation:

Read more

4:55pm

Mon March 31, 2014
Business

The Long Road To GM's Ignition Switch Recall

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 11:08 am

Chevy Cobalts on the assembly line in Ohio in 2008. Documents show General Motors was aware of problems with the car's ignition switch years before, but failed to act.
Ron Schwane AP

The new head of General Motors, Mary Barra, goes to Capitol Hill Tuesday to begin two days of testimony.

It's the first time she'll be questioned about a safety defect that's been linked to at least 13 deaths and has sparked a 2.6 million-vehicle recall.

At issue for the Detroit CEO is a classic question: What did GM know about the problems with ignition switch problems in its cars, and when did the company know it?

And just as important for GM and government regulators is the follow-up question: Why did no one act sooner?

Read more

3:16pm

Fri March 21, 2014
Business

As Carmakers Turn Up The Recalls, Consumers Tune Out

Originally published on Fri March 21, 2014 6:02 pm

The number of vehicles recalled has more than doubled in the past 20 years.
Kevork Djansezian Getty Images

In the past week, Volkswagen recalled 150,000 Passats because of potential hood problems that could damage the headlights, and Honda recalled 900,000 Odyssey vans because of a potential fire hazard.

Those moves follow the recent General Motors recall of 1.6 million vehicles over a faulty ignition switch, which has been linked to 12 deaths. It took the company nearly a decade to inform the public of the problem.

Read more

Pages