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Any hopes that Suzuki might have had a year ago that the Kizashi would revive its U.S. sales prospects were quickly dashed once the car went on sale in late 2009. The attractively style Kizashi has not made any noticeable dent in the hyper-competitive mid-size segment, however, and Suzuki's sales through July are down by 48 percent compared to its already terrible first half of 2009. After peaking at 101,884 units in 2007, Suzuki has only moved 13,501 vehicles through July of this year.

We have no proof that General Motors is getting payback on the three dealers who founded the Committee to Restore Dealer Rights (CRDR), Tammy Darvish, Jack Fitzgerald and Alan Spitzer. But we do know that retribution is a game often played by all sides, and that Darvish, Fitzgerald and Spitzer definitely believe GM has taken the first shot.

Businesses that have tried to capitalize on a perceived demand for zero emissions cars in the last few years are finding their lot in life to be just as difficult, if not more so, than as those selling traditional vehicles. In 2007 and 2008, as gas prices steadily climbed north of $4 a gallon, numerous entrepreneurs decided to try their hands at selling electric vehicles (EVs), including Marc Korchin who opened Green Motors in Berkeley, California.

Back in May, General Motors announced plans to close down a large portion of its dealership network. Since then, a number of those franchisees have lodged complaints to both the automaker itself and appropriate policymakers, leading to possible legislation on how GM is allowed to handle the closing of dealerships. This being the case, The General is proactively drafting a new set of rules as to how it will deal with these to-be-shuttered dealerships, and it promises that some are likely to be re

One of the more controversial parts of the Chrysler bankruptcy was the decision to cut 789 dealerships by June 9. The move made for a quick, painful end to dealerships that in some cases spanned several generations of family ownership. When General Motors entered bankruptcy, it said it would cut about 1,300 retail stores, but the automaker planned on waiting until October, 2010 to pull the plug.

When it comes to dealership closings, there is a big divide between what General Motors, Chrysler and President Obama's auto task force want and what dealers and Congress want. The bankrupt Detroit automakers say that closing dealerships will save money, streamline vehicle delivery, improve brand image, and improve the health of remaining retail stores.

The soon to be terminated 789 Chrysler dealerships have all of five days to sell thousands of Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep models, or else the damned dealers may have to eat their remaining inventory. When the termination letters went out on May 14, the pink-slipped dealers had 44,000 new cars and trucks on their lots, and there are still plenty of vehicles left to sell. Times are tough for the 789 closing Chrysler dealerships, but for customers looking to get into a new Chrysler, Dodge, or Jeep, t

Bill Heard Chevrolet, which had been the largest Chevy dealer in the world by volume, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection this week after closing down all of its 13 stores last week, and the tale of financial ruin is surprisingly bad. The dealer conglomerate owes $229 million to GMAC financing, BMW financing, and JP Morgan Chase, but with the Chapter 11 filing, much of the money owed will likely never see the light of day.

A couple days back we received word from Automotive News that Volvo was looking to downsize its dealer body by 30 percent in an effort to cut costs. The Swedish automaker says that isn't going to happen. PR VP Geno Effler said that while Volvo doesn't plan to cut almost a third of its 350 US dealers, it will try to persuade its struggling dealers to call it quits. The problem with Volvo's denial is that we'd heard about Volvo closing a significant amount of dealers way back in December, before t