|Photo credit: MARC LONGWOOD|
Dealerships fell short of factory's sales targets
July 16, 2007 - 12:01 am
Here are key facts about the Chrysler group's ban of some dealerships from its auctions.
What to do?
Jason Childre, general manager of Childre Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep in Mil-ledgeville, Ga., says the ban puzzles him. Over the past few years, Childre built a strong business selling used rental cars. "It's mind-boggling to me they're going to punish you for buying too many (used cars) from them."
Childre admits that he might have relied too heavily on rental-car sales. But he says he had no choice after hot new vehicles became hard to obtain from the factory. Former customers were switching to metro Atlanta stores that could get vehicles such as the hot-selling four-door Jeep Wrangler.
Chrysler wouldn't let him have hot products unless he agreed to buy vehicles he couldn't sell, Childre contends.
"It's really a shame," says Childre, who says his dealership regularly scores well on customer satisfaction surveys. "I'll bet our financials are as strong as any dealer of any size they've got."
Childre says he thought he was supporting Chrysler by buying program cars: "We were buying (rental) cars because we were supporting the folks we've got a brand sign for. But we're not going to support a bunch of jackasses that want to take our rights away from us. We can buy Toyota. We can buy Honda. We can buy GM."