Chrysler is reportedly looking into selling Motor Village, its prized company-owned downtown LA dealership, to settle a dispute with franchise Chrysler dealers. According to California state law, a company-owned dealership cannot reside anywhere within a 10-mile radius of a franchise dealer. Chrysler's prized Motor Village is within 10 miles of three franchise dealers.

The California Department of Motor Vehicles is investigating the situation at the urging of the California New Car Dealers Association, which has prompted Chrysler to look for a buyer. If the DMV decides Chrysler is in the wrong, the company stands to lose its license to operate the facility. Selling the location to a franchise dealer would settle the dispute once and for all. Whatever shakes out, the potential loss of its business license and flagship dealership must be a bitter pill for Chrysler to swallow.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 22 Comments
      budwsr25
      • 3 Years Ago
      This is dumb. If chrysler wants the dealer ship they should be allowed to keep it. People go to dealers for the best deal they can get not because of who ownes them. Customer service is #1. If chrysler wanted they could just say tell the franchise dealers you don't like it GOODBYE.
        reattadudes
        • 3 Years Ago
        @budwsr25
        are you really that ignorant? are you 16 years old? GM and Ford tried the "company store" concept back in 1990, with Ford in Indianapolis and Salt Lake City, and GM in the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles. so "customer service is #1"? well, it wasn't with the factory stores. they had by far the lowest CSI in the region. why? (I wrote a nearly identical post a few weeks ago when this story first ran) as a former new car dealer myself, your total ignorance wouldn't even allow your brain to wrap around the understanding of how a privately owned new car dealership works. dealers go out of their way to make sure the customer is happy, even if it costs the dealership big bucks. when that minivan with a toasted engine from a soccer mom blowing a radiator hose and not stopping until the engine seizes, or the guy with the one year old four wheeler burns up the transmission when he was hot-dogging while drunk for his buds (putting it in a mudhole in 2WD, then flooring it until it buries itself, and throwing it in reverse when the hole is 4 feet deep), where do you think the vehicle gets dragged to? the new car dealer. it's still under warranty, right? well, guess what? the warranty is void for any cases of abuse or neglect, period. no discussion, end of story. and what do you think that "factory store" will be doing for these customers? nothing. buh-bye. "here is the copy of the warranty. you violated the terms. we are not responsible". now, over 90% of the independently-owned "stealerships" keep cash in reserve for things like this. I had a small dealership, and kept almost a quarter million in reserve; large dealers have millions, when the factory denies abuse claims like this, we repair the vehicle ourselves, at our expense, with new factory parts. when you come in to pick up the vehicle, you're none the wiser. you get a call that your vehicle has been repaired at no charge to you. you see, "stealerships" want you to come back and buy more vehicles from us. if you've received good service, you most likely will. CSI is everything to a dealership, as bonuses from the factory and all sorts of other things are totally based on our CSI. and that factory store? who gets punished for a bad CSI score? no one. most likely they'll be getting awards from the corporate bean counters. every state has franchise laws to protect independently owned companies (and not just automobile dealers) from being abused by large corporations. if the corporation has set up rules about the distance from one dealer to another, it must abide by the rules it made, unless the dealer groups elect to alter it. oh, and that "best deal"? it won't be coming from a factory store. if all dealerships were factory stores, there will be no incentives, no deals, no rebates. everything would be sold at MSRP. warranties would be 12 months/12,000 miles (if that), like they are outside of North America.
          pinyatapbjtime
          • 3 Years Ago
          @reattadudes
          i'm sorry but i haven't seen this sort of customer service from any local dealership except toyota. that too it was probably because i've bought 2 cars from them. everyone else i've had hassles with getting things claimed under warranty, overcharging me, trying to charge me to replace items that don't need to be replaced, ignoring issues that are cheaper to fix in favor of big ticket items. i'm sorry but of the many dealership experiences i've had, more than 90% have tried to take as much money from me as they can, mostly without reason. if i didn't know a few things about cars, i can't imagine how much i would have ended up paying. so yes, i think the term "stealership" is justified. maybe you were the one good guy, but you are not the norm.
      th0mb0ne
      • 3 Years Ago
      I look forward to the day I can buy a new car on Amazon. Or maybe haggle for one on Priceline.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @th0mb0ne
        [blocked]
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      kevsflanagan
      • 3 Years Ago
      Following the sale all local dealerships to this dealership will somehow see a 10% increase in dealer cost's for cars........ (ok that is what I'd do at least). The dealership model is on its way out but sadly laws like this prevent it from actually evolving which is a shame. Chrysler could and should be using this dealership as a test store. See what methods of selling work and which don't and other lessons that could *gasp* help other dealerships sell more cars. I'm not saying Chrysler doesnt know what works and what doesnt but at times thinking you know and learning first hand are two different things. Chrysler could of helped stream line sales and advertising all of which would in turn benefit the dealers themselves. Oh well whomeva buys this dealership hopefully will be nice to Chrysler and in turn reap some benefits themselves.
      Carnut0913
      • 3 Years Ago
      I just find it ridiculous to find two dealerships within 10 miles of each other. I expect the "3" franchises are Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep so its really just 1 other location. Talk about oversaturation, especially in CA where domestics do pretty poorly.
        autoplaybook
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Carnut0913
        FAIL In a metro area of 13.5M people, let's just have one dealership. Good idea! Toyota has 6 dealers in a 10-mile radius in the LA area. And nationwide, Chrysler outsold Toyota last month. And why doesn't Chrysler just close up shop everywhere on the West Coast and only sell in the midwest? Why don't they just can production on all their performance-oriented vehicles, since only a few buy them? Why don't they just build rental cars instead of improving and reaching out to more retail customers with increasingly competitive retail products? "It's too hard, why even try?" is what's killing this country. Quit that noise.
      Hazdaz
      • 3 Years Ago
      Chrysler probably has no choice in the matter. State/local dealership laws are heavily in the dealer's favor on most things. Chrysler could fight the law, but they would definitely lose and create too much negative PR.
        karman876
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Hazdaz
        Between the UAW and franchise laws, you have to wonder how the domestics stay in business.
          Hazdaz
          • 3 Years Ago
          @karman876
          I like how you COMPLETELY negate the moronic management that got Detroit into the mess to begin with. I love how everyone forgets that the UAW was alive and well (and even more powerful), back when GM and Ford ruled the land (and were making money hand-over-fist) in the 50, 60s and even early 70s. How about you learn to place the blame where it really belongs - on the top-level executives that were either too incompetent or too out of touch to battle the foreign carmakers in the late 70s and 80s with competitive products.
          • 3 Years Ago
          @karman876
          [blocked]
          Hazdaz
          • 3 Years Ago
          @karman876
          @ Carnut0913 Who signed these too-sweet deals to the Unions? These top-level executives that were supposedly sooo brilliant that they thought they deserved the millions of dollars of compensation they were getting were somehow duped by the lowly blue-collar Unions?!? If these execs were so brilliant in their management skills, why sign? And don't give me this crap that they were pressure or forced into it. That's utter BS and you know it. These over-paid executives were looking out for their own ass and they were dumb enough to sign anything. At the same time, they were so isolated from what was happening in the market they couldn't see the forest for the trees as to what they needed to do to right the ship. I am not going to say that the Unions don't have a certain level of responsibility, but they are only one, of the many, many, many things that killed GM, and when it comes right down to it, most of those things were home-grown problems created by upper management. They built the wrong products. They didn't focus on fuel economy (something that even today, they tend to lag behind). They didn't demand better quality. Cars were out and Trucks were king. You also mention that the Unions are now clamoring for more money - well of course people want more money. You mean you are going to tell me that YOU don't want more money?? The point is that its a contract (i.e. negotiations) with management and if management had a damn clue, they would explain that they shouldn't have more money. Instead, what does management do? They give THEMSELVES a pay increase of something crazy like 20%. How does THAT show the factory workers that there is no money?? If its some kind of shared sacrifice, then they are missing the "shared" part of that term. Most Detroit executives are already vastly overpaid compared to their foreign rivals, but where is the outrage in cutting their salaries?
          Hazdaz
          • 3 Years Ago
          @karman876
          @ Sea Urchin So the people that STEER the ship only get 30% of the blame for hitting the iceberg? Yeah, that makes a whole hell of a lot of sense. /s
      Jason
      • 3 Years Ago
      Now they can build one in San Fransisco lol.
      SloopJohnB
      • 3 Years Ago
      That CA law should be declared an unconstitutional infringement of interstate commerce.
      MANARC100
      • 3 Years Ago
      Do you guys even know why you can haggle on the price of a car? Because the dealerships are privately owned and in competition with each other for the business. Would you like your car buying experience to be like going to the apple store? Sticker for everything. When you have an issue with the iPhone...got wet, cracked screen, charger broke etc. Does the guy at that store care that its your 2nd iPad or you’re a loyal iTunes customer? NO he doesn’t care. He is only allowed to do what the rules say. Your will be covered or not no exceptions. You pay sticker or don’t get to buy it period. A factory owned retail store is not in the best interests of the consumers. The people running the store don’t care about you and the ones making the rules are 1,000 miles away and just look at numbers. There are good and bad dealerships just like many other things. If you constantly have bad experiences at all dealerships you may want to change the way you conduct yourself. If you go into the store guns blazing every time you want to buy a car and get crappy service in return don’t be surprised. Try negotiating the waitresses tip to $0 before your meal and see how good of service you get....that is exactly what you are doing when buying a car.
        • 3 Years Ago
        @MANARC100
        [blocked]
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