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Will there be another big "upset-wave" coming to the dealerships through autotrader?

I am just having it. Don't you used feel so betrayed by a vendor, who you've backed in their hard moments they had, went for them the extra-mile, when other dealerships gave them the boot, and stuck with them through the entire time, only to learn now that you will be the next "designated idiot", who will receive an asskick from them. I am sure you are wondering what I am talking about, and I agree I am not clearly tell who I am referring to - okay, lets be clear from now.

I just received a phone call from my AutoTrader Rep, and she needs to meet again with me next week to revise all the contracts we just signed. The ink not even dry yet, her Manager won't allow the stipulations we had anchored in the contract. And these contact are the same I had signed and worked with them since last October '08. Talking about sticking to your word and promise.

Spending $23k+ a month with them in my entire group, they really think, that is okay for them to "bully" us around. With "us" I mean you and me, the single dealerships, dealer groups and franchises. I made it really clear to my Rep. that there won't be from our site no concession made, and when I have on Tuesday the meeting with my Rep and her Manager, I guarantee I more than happy to spend the amount of money (what I am spending right now with autotrader) elsewhere.

Please do understand - this is not a threat - it is my promise!

How do you feel about the more and more occurring "trust-lost" we experience on daily basis from our vendors, who are suppose to help us to sell more cars? Do you think I am over-reacting? Am I to hard on them? I appreciate your comments and thoughts.

Views: 53

Tags: autotrader, breach, cars, contract, do, more, of, pending, sell, think, More…what, you


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Comment by VJ on February 27, 2009 at 12:41pm
I will surely fight for it. Especially that I am closing right now +20% from them.
Comment by Chris Hanson on February 27, 2009 at 9:47am
I'm with ya, my Mom is 100% German. Yeah, she was straight forward and direct right across my backside :-)

No one wants a bad deal thats for sure.

I would be hard pressed to suggest to my dealers to drop AT based on the phone calls, the traffic it drives to the showroom of people that do not call or email, they just show up because they saw it on AT, the email leads that come in and the referral traffic it generates to the dealers website. Its strong. Very strong.

That being said, from what I have read of your posts, you know your store and have a good pulse of it so you will make good use of that money if you yank them. I hope they buckle and you get your deal!
Comment by VJ on February 27, 2009 at 9:39am
I appreciate your insight. Believe me they lost quite business in the ATL market. We are one of the groups with the fastest growth, and the Rep did not make any assumptions or promises. The deal went last year clear and we never had a problem. Believe they will see what it means that Germans are very straight forward and direct with their approach. My "deal" is not outrageous good for us or bad for AT. They just want to try and to see how far "pusging it" will go. Not at my stores at this time, I'll promise.
Comment by Chris Hanson on February 27, 2009 at 9:28am
I personally haven't had that problem with AT with my last two positions and my current one working with dealers and overseeing their Internet Departments and working directly with AT reps. That being said, I know problems like this are not uncommon.

Taking the cynical view, vendors do hire many car salespeople :-) and what you are describing unfortunately, sounds like a very common car deal that takes place everyday in dealerships around the country.

Promises made that cannot be kept....Management won't approve the deal, loyal customer that has bought several cars and when they have a problem - dealer won't take care of it.

Is that how you or I do business, no, of course not but like I said, car people working " car deals".

But to answer your question "Do you think I am over-reacting" I would wonder:

Do you think it was a rep making a promise that they couldn't keep or AT not taking the deal? More importantly do you know other dealers who have the same type of deal you have asked for or are you pushing the limits of the "car deal"?

If you know another dealer that spends the same kind of money you do and they are getting the type of deal you want but AT won't give it to you, then, yes, I would have a problem with it.

What are you thoughts.....

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