General Motors Warns Dealers Charging Market Adjustments

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Written by Shane McGlaun | January 21, 2022
General Motors Warns Dealers Charging Market Adjustments

I have frequently complained about how dealerships take popular and in-demand vehicles, particularly sports cars, and tack on tens of thousands of dollars onto the MSRP. This price-gouging practice is common in the industry and has been going on for many years. For example, a dealer markup on a 2012 Boss 302 Mustang drove me away from the Ford brand, and I haven’t owned a Ford vehicle since then after a long string of brand-new Mustangs spanning many years. Not long ago, Ford put its dealer network on notice for demanding additional money on top of reservation amounts for vehicles like the Lightning electric pickup.

According to Corvette Action Center, General Motors has issued a bulletin to its dealership network. It specifically calls out dealer markups and demanding additional money to secure a reservation for some of its popular vehicles, particularly the Corvette Z06. The bulletin was sent to the dealership network from Steve Carlisle, GM North America President. In the statement, he tells the dealer network that the manufacturer is working hard to get dealers vehicles to sell.

However, Carlisle says that it has come to the company’s attention that some dealers are engaging in practices that “do not support a positive sales experience for our customers.” He goes on to say that tactics such as requesting customers pay sums “far in excess of MSRP” or demanding money above and beyond reservation amounts for GM vehicles don’t support a “positive sales experience for our customers.”

Carlisle goes on to remind dealers that they are obligated under their Dealer Sales and Service Agreement in Article 5 to “ethically and lawfully sell GM products.” The punishment for dealerships to continue to demand excess payments for GM vehicles is that they will lose their allocation for in-demand vehicles. It’s fantastic to see automotive manufacturers finally taking steps to stop greedy price gouging dealerships from driving loyal customers to other brands and preventing fans who want these special vehicles from being able to buy them.

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