East Texas GM dealers get word from corporate

By Holley Nees - bio | email

EAST TEXAS, TX (KTRE) - East Texas dealers said General Motors sent them notices via FedEx Tuesday informing them they were a dealership they wanted to move forward with.   It also included an agreement inviting them to become part of the new GM once it emerged from bankruptcy.

"I think GM has realized that it's crunch time.  They're going to have to make the right kind of cars and trucks that everybody wants and be very competitive price wise.  It's one of those kind of deals where really their backs are against the wall," said Owner of Rex Perry Autoplex Rex Perry as he recalled the first round of letters from GM.  He's thankful to be continuing with the new GM.

"When you see that FedEx envelope, course the first round...I think they cut 1,143 dealers or something like that.  Of course, we never felt like we'd be one of them, but you really never know.  But, when I got it today, I opened it up, course your heart beats a little bit.  Especially when they entered the bankruptcy, you know they have a little bit of a hammer to do whatever they want to do," Perry said.

Other East Texas dealers agree and are happy to be sticking around.

John Clifton, General Manager of Clifton Chevrolet said, "We did receive a FedEx envelope today outlining basically I think what it is, is pretty much just assignment of our franchise agreement to the new GM."

A blessing for his dealership, he said, "We feel comfortable and confident through the whole process, but you don't know until you actually see it in writing, you just don't know."

Clifton said because GM now has fewer dealerships, they could make some franchise changes.

"It's possible that there may be some changes within the franchise structure with a lot of dealerships.  I don't know if we'll be one of them or not," Clifton said.

While the answers may not be clear, these two dealers plan to serve East Texans for years to come as members of the new GM.

"Hopefully this will be the first step in them getting back on their feet," Clifton said.

"They want me to sign a few agreements and then they move the dealership corporation to the new GM and then they go on down the road," said Perry.

In the letter, dealers said the company explains in detail how the old GM will be phased out and the company will move forward with the new GM.