Chrysler is holding an open house for select dealers to show off the new Fiat 500. Scheduled August 30th, the presentation will introduce these prospective Fiat dealers to the Fiat 500 and go over Fiat's plans to re-enter the US market.
Notable in this Chrysler press release is the revised date of when the new Fiat dealers will be announced, which has been pushed back to October from the previously announced September.
Also, the separate facilities requirement has been clarified to separate sales and display at launch and eventually a new facility as volume grows. This clarification will ease the concern that some dealers expressed in having to immediately invest in a separate Fiat facility.
New car dealerships are extremely expensive to build and maintain. Building a modern dealership is measured in the millions of dollars. Paying for all that selling a $20,000 car that nets 10% was a legitimate concern. Remember, Fiat estimates about 50,000 Fiat 500s will be sold in North America, it's going to be hard (impossible) to pay for a new facility selling 12-15 cars per month.
Now, with this easing of the separate facility requirement at launch, this gives dealers breathing room so they can ramp up their facilities for the eventual re-introduction of Alfa Romeo in 2012. Adding Alfa Romeo will increase sales volumes and help pay for the new facilities.
Being concerned about how much a dealer makes might be distasteful for some, but remember, we all want to have a nice dealership experience. Clean, modern, with loaner cars and top notch service. To get this costs money and our neighbors and friends who work there need to get paid for working hard. Keeping the dealerships profitable goes a long way in guaranteeing a happy customer.
Targeted markets revealed
Great news is the publication of the targeted market areas. They are listed at the end of the press release. Hope you're in one of the areas!
Below is the Chrysler Press release:
Chrysler Group LLC Invites Dealers to Fiat Experience
*About 600 Chrysler Group LLC dealers invited to the Fiat Experience
*Chrysler Group to present details on Fiat retail network plans
*Interested dealers to submit Fiat dealership proposals in September
*Dealers to be chosen for Fiat franchises in early October
August 9, 2010 , Auburn Hills, Mich.
Chrysler Group LLC has invited about 600 of its dealers to attend the Fiat Experience on Aug. 30 in Detroit as it takes another step closer to reintroducing the Fiat brand – starting with the New Fiat 500 – in the United States later this year.
The approximately 600 dealers were informed today that they are in one of the U.S. markets where Chrysler Group is currently planning representation for the Fiat brand. Chrysler Group has identified 119 markets in the U.S. with strong small-car registrations and growth potential in the small-car segment over the next five years.
The Fiat Experience will provide the dealers with a comprehensive overview of Chrysler Group’s plans for Fiat in the U.S. Dealers may submit proposals for a Fiat franchise through Sept. 22.
“The requirements for Fiat are straightforward: separate sales and display at launch, transitioning to a full dealership facility as the volume grows,” said Peter Grady, Chrysler Group’s Vice President of Network Development and Fleet. “Our goal is to establish a retail network appropriately sized to serve the market opportunity.”
The email was sent to dealers today from Grady and Laura Soave, Head of Fiat North America.
Chrysler Group, in selecting its Fiat dealers, will consider a number of measures, including:
*Dealer sales performance
*Plan for a separate Fiat facility
*Comprehensive marketing plan
*Compliance on dealer standards
Chrysler Group will announce its Fiat dealers in the fourth quarter.
Current U.S. Fiat Market Considerations – By State
New Port Richey
Essex N. Union
Salt Lake City
With thanks to Chrysler media and Fiat Group Press