Before investing in store upgrades, Lincoln dealers want Ford Motor Co. to offer more details about Lincoln's future lineup. According to several dealer sources, some dealerships are being asked to spend over $1 million to remodel buildings and make other improvements to meet new standards that Ford has yet to disclose.
Larry Taylor, owner of Beau Townsend Ford-Lincoln Mercury in Vandalia, Ohio, said that there would be no new products for about 24 months.
He asserts that he doesn’t know how the stand-alone Lincoln dealers will make it, especially dealers who would have to spend $2 million on their upgrades. Taylor is also a member of the Ford Lincoln Mercury National Dealer Council.
Ford aims to cut at least 200 of 1,200 US Lincoln franchises, most of which are in the top 130 metro markets. Ford expects that having fewer, more profitable dealerships will rehabilitate the luxury brand.
Ford has started to offer cash to some Lincoln dealers, ranging from over $300,000 to about $1.5 million, to give up the franchise if they're not in a "preferred location" or refuse to make the recommended improvements. [via autonews - sub. required]