The focus in the Tesla dealer fight has been direct sales, but traditional dealers should be more worried about other forces at work against them.
"Hi, welcome to John Q. Dealer's Toyota. What's that, you need an oil change? Okay, that's only going to take all week." We've all been here. A simple procedure at the dealership turns into a day in a tiny room, with stale coffee, out-of-date magazines and daytime television surrounded by people that are as disgruntled as you. Why, oh why, does it take so long to get work done at the local dealership?
Only one fifth of Chrysler Group dealers will have the chance to sell 2013 SRT Viper, according to an Automotive News report. To qualify for the V10 beast, a hopeful dealer will have to train staff and purchase special tools, as well as improve their facilities. This does not guarantee the ability to sell the Viper. It merely keeps the dealer on the list of potential suitors.
Hyundai has officially become the first automaker to jump into the Groupon party by offering customers a $29 oil change, inspection and tire rotation. The manufacturer says around 1,300 individuals participated in the event across 10 dealers in the greater Chicago area and that the move was part of an ongoing effort to increase service business. The hope is that some of those customers who participated in the deal might come back for more vehicle work in the near future.
The pains many automobile owners are feeling at their local service station isn't just at the pump -- prices for general maintenance is also increasing. Petroleum based products, such as oil and tires, are heading north with the price of gasoline. Demand for steel has also pushed up prices on various automotive parts. That means consumers are seeing larger bills from their auto repair specialists, even when their exhaust doesn't require three people to install. Instead, many are choosing to sque
Toyota has so far resisted expanding its dealer body in the wake of the Japanese automaker's unprecedented climb up the sales charts. In eight years, Toyota has gone from having 15 million of its vehicles on the road to 22 million today. So far dealers have been able to keep up with the torrid sales pace, but at the service end, dealerships are busting at the seams. In an attempt to alleviate some of that pressure for landlocked dealers, Toyota has piloted off-site service centers and oil change
This will be excellent when you go to buy that used Mercedes. Rather than searching high and low for that needle-in-a-haystack owner who kept meticulous records and the car serviced to a T, Mercedes is rolling out a Digital Service Booklet. Mercedes says it will be more convenient and efficient to build a digital record of a vehicle's service history than trying to track it on dead trees.
Ford has been studying the question of when to suggest oil changes, and they've hit upon 7,500 miles for 2007 and newer cars. Not only are modern oils better, modern engines are also better. You don't have carburetors metering poorly on winter mornings, tolerances are a lot tighter, and operating temperatures are typically a little hotter, helping to cook off the junk that accumulates in the oil. Some manufacturers use a sensor to monitor the health of the oil and light a service lamp when it ca
For those of us who like to service our own cars, being able to retrieve the OBD-II codes is important. There are various readers on the market, with some more capable than others. Of course, once the codes are retrieved, you need to know how to interpret them. The common misconception is that the on-board diagnostics will tell you exactly what's wrong. The truth is, codes may be set that call out a particular component or system which are symptoms, not causes. To really get to the root of the p
A team from Paris High School in Texas took the top spot in this past weekend's Ford/AAA Auto Skills Challenge. The goal of the yearly competition, which pits the top 50 two-man teams against each other, is to accurately diagnosis and repair a vehicle that has been deliberately disabled. The teams are given a maximum of 90 minutes to complete the task, and Bradley J. Bolton and Aaron Clay were able to get their Mustang GT convertible started in less than 30 minutes. For that half-hour of wo
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