Chrysler sued by four upstate New York dealers to block new rival

Article by Christian Andrei, on August 23, 2012

Chrysler has been sued by four upstate New York dealers in federal court for granting a dealership to a local auto group and threatening their sales. These four dealers -- Albany Dodge, Armory Garage, Goldstein Chrysler Jeep and Saratoga Chrysler Jeep-Dodge – are located in the Albany/ Schenectady area.

They claim that by permitting Lia Auto Group to operate a Chrysler dealership in the Albany suburb of Colonie, Chrysler is going up against its strategy of reducing the number of dealerships after reorganization. By filing the lawsuit on August 15 in the U.S. District Court for the northern district of New York, the dealers hope to block the opening of the new Lia dealership. They’re also seeking financial penalties.

They further claim that Chrysler is not following its plan to have a dealer network that’s smaller and more efficient, similar to what Toyota and Honda are doing. The other defendant in the case is Lia Auto Group, which is set to open its Chrysler dealership in September at the Lia Collision Center in Colonie. It also aims to open a permanent showroom located just east of its Lia Toyota store in Colonie in 2013.

It was in 1977 that the company was established. In a statement, Michael Lia, co-president of the Lia Auto Group, said that they were impressed with Chrysler’s strategy and that they believe that they will remain to be “strong players in the American automotive market.” The Times Union newspaper in Albany reported that when Lia Auto Group opens the dealership, it will be selling 12 brands at 17 locations in New York, Massachusetts and Connecticut.

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