General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coastal s

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    General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coastal s

    General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coastal states

    http://ca.finance.yahoo.com/news/Gen...10195.html?x=0

    By Tom Krisher, The Associated Press

    SAN FRANCISCO - General Motors may add dealers in big metro areas on the U.S. coasts because it expects sales there to grow, two top executives said Saturday.

    It's the opposite of the company's stance just two years ago when GM got rid of about 1,700 dealers across the U.S. as it headed into bankruptcy protection.

    GM has been losing dealers on the coasts, especially in California, for two decades due to slow sales as people bought more foreign brands. Company officials say GM's poor products also played a significant role.

    Mark Reuss, GM's North American president, said Saturday that the company's dealership footprint on the coasts was destroyed by the lack of products, the financial meltdown and GM's 2009 trip through bankruptcy protection.

    The company, he said, wants to rebuild the network because its newer models, like the Chevrolet Cruze compact, are starting to sell better in coastal markets, and GM expects growth to continue as it rolls out more new products and the economy recovers.

    "We know there's areas where we should be that we're not," said Don Johnson, vice-president of U.S. sales. "We didn't have the product. We didn't have the focus. We were irrelevant to California consumers."

    GM needs more dealers in the San Francisco and Los Angeles metropolitan areas and will look at other areas on the East and West coasts and around the Gulf of Mexico, the executives said. They gave no timetable for the changes and said they could move dealerships from depressed areas or add new franchises.

    GM has only 227 dealerships in California, about the same number it has in Michigan, which has less than one-fourth as many residents.

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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    For Chevy, who is heavily pushing a green initiative with the Volt, it's appalling that Chevy doesn't have one single dealership within the city limits of San Francisco. The closest one is in the suburb of Colma -- where the population of dead people is about 1000x that of the living population. (It's a necropolis.) And the Chevy dealership in Colma is one of those veritable trash heaps from a bygone era.

    Reopen one in San Francisco Chevy!!!! And reopen a Cadillac dealership too!!! And junk the haunted shack of a Cadillac dealership in Colma.

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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    Related:

    GM Says About 90% of Dealers Reporting Profits
    Wall Street Journal
    February 5, 2011
    by Mike Ramsey

    SAN FRANCISCO About 90% of General Motors Co. dealers are reporting profits, up from 40% at the end of 2009, said Mark Reuss, the president of North American operations.

    GM, which exited a government-backed bankruptcy in July 2009, has 1,650 fewer dealerships today than it did before the restructuring. The lower number of dealers has made the remaining dealerships more profitable, both on new and used car sales but also higher service business.

    Still, despite the cuts in dealerships, which was partially driven by cutting four brands, including Hummer, Saab, Pontiac and Saturn, GM is looking at moving or building dealerships on the West and East coasts.

    "We need to improve our footprint on the coasts," Mr. Reuss said. "We may have enough, but they may be poorly distributed. We need to get the right distributions on the coasts because we don't have it right now."

    GM has long struggled to gain market share on the West Coast, where Asian automakers have dominated. GM now may be looking to add or relocate dealerships in areas like San Francisco and Los Angeles and Long Island in New York. GM said it has 227 dealers in California.

    "Clearly, we have to be in the right places if we are going to be successful," said Don Johnson, GM sales chief. "We know there are areas that we should be, that we are not."

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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    Quote Originally Posted by mgescuro View Post
    For Chevy, who is heavily pushing a green initiative with the Volt, it's appalling that Chevy doesn't have one single dealership within the city limits of San Francisco. The closest one is in the suburb of Colma -- where the population of dead people is about 1000x that of the living population. (It's a necropolis.) And the Chevy dealership in Colma is one of those veritable trash heaps from a bygone era.

    Reopen one in San Francisco Chevy!!!! And reopen a Cadillac dealership too!!! And junk the haunted shack of a Cadillac dealership in Colma.
    Would it need to be a "Corporate" dealership? Who has the cash that would be willing to sink it into a Chevrolet dealership in San Francisco today?
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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    Quote Originally Posted by Hitman1970 View Post
    Would it need to be a "Corporate" dealership? Who has the cash that would be willing to sink it into a Chevrolet dealership in San Francisco today?


    So long as a Chevy dealership actually opens up in SF, I wouldn't care.

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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    Quote Originally Posted by Hitman1970 View Post
    Would it need to be a "Corporate" dealership? Who has the cash that would be willing to sink it into a Chevrolet dealership in San Francisco today?
    Probably most other healthy dealerships of other makes would have the $$. Possibly swap a Mitsu dealer for a Chevey?

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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    As the product is getting much better and more compelling, glad to see they are attacking the US strongholds of the Asian and Euro Luxury brands. The Volt and Cruze Eco are no brainers for a big product push on the coasts. Hollywood already loves the Escalades!!

    Keep the good product coming and they will have some success.
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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    How can they sell the Volt in San Fran if they have zero Chevy dealers?
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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    This statment sums up why GM is uncompetitive in California:

    "We know there's areas where we should be that we're not," said Don Johnson, vice-president of U.S. sales. "We didn't have the product. We didn't have the focus. We were irrelevant to California consumers."

    GM is irrelevnet to California and other coastal markets because the features on GM products do not match the needs of the consumers there.

    I know I have mentioned this more times than many want to hear but sorry the lack of Fog Lights on the proper trim levels has detroyed GM's chances out here. If you want to sell cars to Californians you must put Fog Lights on no lower than the second trim level (1LT for Chevrolet) and they must be standard on all other "car" brands Buick and Cadillac as well as all GMC models above "Work Truck" trim.

    Californians have to deal with Fog quite often and like other "extras" so it helps if those Fog Lights are accompanied by a set of Alloys with a bit of chrome trim or a spoiler thrown in, many automakers have made "California Edition" models and had market success with them.

    This is a very easy problem to fix, and the total lack of Malibus on California roads where new Fusion and Sonatas are common is proof of it.

    Another issue plaguing GM products in California (and many other markets) is a poor color pallate that is too heavily weighted in bland Silvers and Grays with few "light color" choices outside of Silver/Gray. The Light Green Nissan used when the Altima grew in size made that car out here as many not only liked the car but the color "stood out" from the sea of Sliver/Gray. Honda has had success with both Gold and Light Green with the Accord and Toyota sells alot of Gold Camrys. Other colors that have proven popular are Medium Blues on everything from Civics up to 5-Series Bimmers as well as Emerald Green on Dodge Trucks, BMWs and Accords. White is also a very popular color even if it can be bland, but it stays cooler, lasts longer and is easier to keep clean since most Californians don't deal with salted roads and the lovely gray grunge it puts on cars.

    While Black is OK but it gets HOT out here so multiple shades of Black, Metallic Black, Dark Blue and others are an overkill and Basic Red does not sell well here since it turns into a nasty "Rorange" later although metallic Reds like GM does offer do well.

    California buyers are and have been wary of GM products for decades and any "feature" that is improperly handled will not be forgiven, since many have been burned in the past.

    Finally most dealer marketing out here is all about the "deal" and rarely about the product, but as stated above the product is not compatible with buyers needs so there is a reason for it. The inventory on GM lots out here is to be kind "uncompetitive" with wrong colors on wrong trims levels along with the aformentioned "deletions". I could increase GM sales 10% in a year if I could just move a couple of features and put the cars on the lots in the right colors, let me change some colors and add a feature here and there and sales would double from 2010 levels - easy.
    Last edited by SierraGS; 02-06-2011 at 01:31 PM.

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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    Quote Originally Posted by Canuck View Post
    General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coastal states

    http://ca.finance.yahoo.com/news/Gen...10195.html?x=0
    When I was a kid in the 50's and 60's, there were 7 Chevrolet dealerships just in the city of San Francisco! Ellis Brooks, George Olsen (both within 5 or 6 blocks of each other, on the Van Ness Ave. auto row, downtown; Olsen switched to Cadillac in early 70's, before going out of business), David Varner (formerly Geer Chevrolet, on Geary Blvd., in the Richmond district), Holiday (in the Sunset district, on 18th Avenue and Taraval St.), Les Vogel, (also downtown, on South Van Ness Ave.; Vogel relocated to San Bruno in the late 70's but didn't survive) Stewart (formerly on Mission St. but now in the Serramonte automall in Colma), Gateway (just over the city limits in Daly City, but long gone) -- now there are NONE, with Ellis Brooks still in business but only leasing new or selling used cars. Actually I guess there is one, if you count Stewart, still in business but not in the City anymore. There aren't any Buick or Cadillac dealers in the City anymore, either. There were at least 3 Buick dealers (Spencer on Van Ness, Waters on Market St. and Herrera on Geary) back in the day, to say nothing of Boas Pontiac on Market St., and Van Ness Oldsmobile. Going way back, there was also C.M. Murphy Oldsmobile, out in the Ingleside district, on 19th Avenue. Murphy Oldsmobile became Lesher-Muirhead in the mid-60's, then they moved to Colma and became Serramonte Oldsmobile in the 70's.
    Those were the days!
    Last edited by 62impala; 02-06-2011 at 02:33 PM.

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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    This would be the perfect time and place for the GM corporate owned & managed dealership experiment.
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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    Encinitas needs a Chevy dealer

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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    Quote Originally Posted by tripowergto View Post
    How can they sell the Volt in San Fran if they have zero Chevy dealers?
    *ding ding ding ding*

    Makes ya wonder, HUH!!???

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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    Quote Originally Posted by SierraGS View Post
    This statment sums up why GM is uncompetitive in California:

    "We know there's areas where we should be that we're not," said Don Johnson, vice-president of U.S. sales. "We didn't have the product. We didn't have the focus. We were irrelevant to California consumers."

    GM is irrelevnet to California and other coastal markets because the features on GM products do not match the needs of the consumers there.

    I know I have mentioned this more times than many want to hear but sorry the lack of Fog Lights on the proper trim levels has detroyed GM's chances out here. If you want to sell cars to Californians you must put Fog Lights on no lower than the second trim level (1LT for Chevrolet) and they must be standard on all other "car" brands Buick and Cadillac as well as all GMC models above "Work Truck" trim.

    Californians have to deal with Fog quite often and like other "extras" so it helps if those Fog Lights are accompanied by a set of Alloys with a bit of chrome trim or a spoiler thrown in, many automakers have made "California Edition" models and had market success with them.

    This is a very easy problem to fix, and the total lack of Malibus on California roads where new Fusion and Sonatas are common is proof of it.

    Another issue plaguing GM products in California (and many other markets) is a poor color pallate that is too heavily weighted in bland Silvers and Grays with few "light color" choices outside of Silver/Gray. The Light Green Nissan used when the Altima grew in size made that car out here as many not only liked the car but the color "stood out" from the sea of Sliver/Gray. Honda has had success with both Gold and Light Green with the Accord and Toyota sells alot of Gold Camrys. Other colors that have proven popular are Medium Blues on everything from Civics up to 5-Series Bimmers as well as Emerald Green on Dodge Trucks, BMWs and Accords. White is also a very popular color even if it can be bland, but it stays cooler, lasts longer and is easier to keep clean since most Californians don't deal with salted roads and the lovely gray grunge it puts on cars.

    While Black is OK but it gets HOT out here so multiple shades of Black, Metallic Black, Dark Blue and others are an overkill and Basic Red does not sell well here since it turns into a nasty "Rorange" later although metallic Reds like GM does offer do well.

    California buyers are and have been wary of GM products for decades and any "feature" that is improperly handled will not be forgiven, since many have been burned in the past.

    Finally most dealer marketing out here is all about the "deal" and rarely about the product, but as stated above the product is not compatible with buyers needs so there is a reason for it. The inventory on GM lots out here is to be kind "uncompetitive" with wrong colors on wrong trims levels along with the aformentioned "deletions". I could increase GM sales 10% in a year if I could just move a couple of features and put the cars on the lots in the right colors, let me change some colors and add a feature here and there and sales would double from 2010 levels - easy.

    That pretty much says it all.
    GM doesn't offer the features that California and more coastal markets insist and demand.
    GM doesn't market effectively in CA -- the largest market in the US.
    GM has a very poor reputation in CA, due to poor quality control, poor dealership network, and too many customers being burned.

    All GM really pushes in CA are the trucks. And while they do sell a bunch of trucks, you can't sell them in the 3 major metro areas because of high vehicle traffic in the South and high density in the Bay Area.

    Finally, gas prices are higher in CA than pretty much anywhere in the US outside of Hawaii. The fact GM failed to focus on fuel economy for so long, led GM to lose significant market share.

    And now that GM has Volt.... there aren't any dealerships in key areas.

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    Re: General Motors execs say automaker may add dealerships in California, other coast

    They need a RWD Chevy sedan for California.

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