Rockwall Dodge not on list of Chrysler dealer closures


NEW YORK-Rockwall Dodge-Chrysler-Jeep is not on the list of 11 DFW dealerships that Chrysler announced yesterday it is ending its association with, as part of its bankruptcy filing.

Chrysler LLC wants to eliminate 789 of its U.S. 3,200 dealerships. Fifty Texas dealerships made the closure list.

The auto maker called its network of dealerships antiquated and admitted it has too many stores competing with each other.

Among those stores slated to close in DFW are: Preston Chrysler Jeep in Dallas; Tommy Manuel Chrysler-Jeep in Arlington; Manuel Dodge in Richardson; Jim McNatt Dodge and Huffines Chrysler Jeep in Denton; Frank Kent Dodge in Fort Worth; El Dorado Motors (Chrysler-Jeep) in McKinney; Grubbs Chrysler-Jeep in Bedford; Carlisle Jeep and Bossier Dodge in Waxahachie; and Russell Whatley Motor Co. in Mineral Wells.

Click here for a complete list of those marked for closure across the U.S.

According to a motion filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York, Chrysler said many of the dealers’ sales are too low. Just over 50 percent of the dealers account for about 90 percent of the company’s U.S. sales.

Although dealers can appeal, the move is likely to cause the loss of thousands of jobs nationwide and devastating affects in cities and towns across the country as taxes are not paid.

Chrysler spokespeople would not comment other than to say the company will notify dealers before speaking publicly.

In its motion, Chrysler said it has many dealerships that sell one or two of its brands, with Chrysler-Jeep dealerships competing against Dodge dealers as well as other automakers’ stores across the country.

“In addition, as suburbs grew and the modern interstate system continued to evolve, longstanding dealerships no longer were in the best or growing locations,” the company said in its filing. “Many rural locations also served a diminishing population of potential consumers. Some dealership facilities became outdated. Other locations faced declining traffic count and declining populations.”

Chrysler has received $4 billion in federal loans and has been operating in bankruptcy protection since April 30. Its sales this year are down 46 percent compared with the first four months of last year and it reported a $16.8 billion net loss for 2008. 

Chrysler dealerships aren’t the only ones scheduled to get bad news this week. General Motors Corp. also said it will be notifying 1,100 dealers that it will not renew their franchise agreements when they expire at the end of September of 2010.

The closest local Chevrolet dealerships are Lakeside Chevrolet in Rockwall, Wylie Musser Chevrolet in Terrell, Bob Tedford Chevrolet in Farmersville, Britain Chevrolet in Greenville, Jupiter Chevrolet in Garland, Reliable Chevrolet in Richardson and Huffines Chevrolet in Plano.

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