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St. Petersburg's Crown Buick Pontiac GMC dealership hit by General Motors cuts

Crown Buick Pontiac GMC is the latest local casualty of the General Motors dealership cuts.

The St. Petersburg dealership will continue selling and servicing GM vehicles through October 2010. After that, it will no longer offer warranty service but continue to offer other GM repairs and maintenance.

"It is what it is," said Jim Myers, vice president and chief operating officer for parent company Crown Automotive Group.

The company received a letter from General Motors sealing the dealership's fate on June 2, Myers said. He said that despite the dealership' strong sales performance, General Motors denied its appeal.

Crown has 25 automotive franchises in Pinellas County, Tallahassee and Columbus, Ohio.

The dealer has contacted customers and explained the situation, he said. Myers said he anticipated relocating all GM employees to other dealerships.

General Motors makes up only a small percentage of Crown's sales in Pinellas, Myers said.

Instead of crying over spilled milk, Crown Automotive is focusing on the future, he said.

Crown is in the process of evaluating a potential bid for Ernie Haire Ford, the Tampa dealership that filed for bankruptcy in November and will go up for auction Aug. 17.

"Our sales are up, and we feel like there is some upside in Ford. The opportunity to expand into Hillsborough is attractive," he said.

St. Petersburg's Crown Buick Pontiac GMC dealership hit by General Motors cuts 08/04/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, August 5, 2009 10:16am]
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