Ford to host a meeting with dealers to discuss Lincoln’s future

Article by Christian Andrei, on September 10, 2010

Lincoln dealerships will be meeting on Oct. 4 to talk about plans to revive a brand that has been left behind by rivals, including Cadillac and Mercedes. Ford Motor Co. will be hosting this meeting at its headquarters. Ford is currently preparing to phase out its Mercury brand and is in ongoing talks with dealers over the compensation for eliminating the brand.

Ford spokesman Christian Bokich said that the meeting will inform dealers about how Ford will be working with Lincoln as an “exclusive, luxury brand."

There are about 1,700 Mercury dealerships, most of which are partnered with Ford or Ford and Lincoln. But there were only 264 Lincoln-Mercury dealerships at the end of July.

A lot of these dealerships rely on Mercury for the majority of their sales and many foresee an uncertain future when they would be depending only on Lincoln.

Ford and Mercury dealers have reportedly been talking about compensation. A source said that in order for Ford to avoid a lengthy legal battle, dealers have been offered payouts of about $300,000 to $400,000 each.

Bokich said that it’s likely that the number of Lincoln dealers that would emerge as stand-alone sales points for the brand would be known after the Oct. 4 meeting. [via autonews - sub. required]

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