Marc Crow could finally breath a little easier.
Crow’s Turnpike Chrysler Dodge Jeep, located east of Miami on SH 10, found out Thursday morning that his was not one of 789 dealerships nationwide that Chrysler LLC seeks to break contracts with.
“It is a big relief,” Crow said. “We are proud to still be a Chrysler Dodge Jeep dealer moving forward. It’s been an interesting past 90 days.”
Dealers were told Thursday morning through United Parcel Service letters if they would remain or be eliminated.
“We received the good one,” Crow said. “If you read around on a lot of dealers who were closed, a lot of them were not all Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep under one roof. We were fortunate that we have all three under one roof.”
The company asked permission in bankruptcy court to cancel the agreements with about a quarter of its 3,188 retail outlets nationwide by June 9. Chrysler says its necessary to its viability and its pending sale to Fiat SpA.
According to The Associated Press, the move would affect 12 Oklahoma dealerships.
Those include Ballard’s of Clinton, Inc. in Clinton, Eddie Cordes Incorporated in Lawton, Milo Gordon Chrysler in Lawton, Stillwater Motor Company in Stillwater, Wilson Chevrolet in Stillwater, Janzen, Inc. in Enid, Jensen’s in Fairview, JHS Business Associates in Atoka, John Thomas Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep in Cordell, Oakley Pontiac-Buick in Bartlesville, Reynolds Autogroup in Durant and Williams Chevrolet-Pontiac in Stigler.
The only dealership in the immediate area affected was Neosho (Mo.) Chrysler Dodge Jeep.
Chrysler Vice Chairman Jim Press called the cuts difficult but necessary. He said the list of dealers is final and there will be no appeal process.
More than half of the dealerships being eliminated sell less than 100 vehicles per year and account for 14 percent of U.S. sales, Chrysler executives said.
“This is a difficult day for us and not a day anybody can be prepared for,” Press told reporters during a conference call.
A hearing is scheduled for June 3 in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York for the judge to determine whether to approve Chrysler's motion.
“Obviously, they look at market share penetration and how you do against other manufacturers,” Crow said. “Quite honestly, with the customers we have in around Miami and the surrounding area, they are big Dodge supporters. That helps.”
Crow said Chrysler has not divulged much information to its dealers during the bankruptcy proceedings.
“What we’ve heard is everything is moving like it should,” Crow said. “The sale agreement with Fiat should be approved. Once that gets done, sometime in June they will come out of bankruptcy basically with a new company.
“Having fiat’s technology will be unbelievable, especially if gas prices go back up. They have great technology.”
The Associated Press contributed some information to this report.