So-called "market adjustments" are NOT acceptable.
The 2023 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 is one of the most highly-anticipated new vehicles coming to market. Like the C8 Stingray a few years ago, hopeful buyers are quickly making their way to dealerships to place deposits in the hopes of reserving one. This isn't a bad situation for GM to be in but it does have one very unfortunate consequence: dealership markups, aka "Market Adjustments." Markups are nothing new and we've seen them happen repeatedly for oftentimes low-volume and in-demand new vehicles.
The latest example is the Ford F-150 Lightning. Several Ford dealers were called out for inflating prices by several thousand dollars. The Blue Oval quickly responded stating that any dealer caught making these so-called adjustments will see their F-150 Lightning allocations reduced to zero. Legacy automakers don't own dealerships but they do have some power over them.
And now GM is doing exactly the same thing. Per the Corvette Action Center, GM's North American President Steve Carlisle has just sent a letter to Chevy dealers stating that they too are at risk of seeing their Z06 allocations sent elsewhere if they engage in excessive markups.
"We are all very excited about recent GM news and product launches including the Chevrolet Corvette Z06, Chevrolet Silverado EV, GMC HUMMER EVs, GMC Sierra EV, and Cadillac LYRIQ.", it begins. "Unfortunately, it has come to our attention that in connection with some of these announcements and launches, a small number of Dealers have engaged in practices that do not support a positive sales experience for our customers."
"This puts our collective interests at risk and generates negative press that reflect poorly on GM's brands and your dealerships. Specifically, it has come to our attention that some dealerships have attempted to demand money above and beyond the reservation amounts set in GM's program rules and/or have requested customers to pay sums far in excess of MSRP in order to purchase or lease a vehicle."
The letter ultimately concludes that "GM will be forced to take action if it learns of any unethical sales practices or brokering activities… [and that] this letter serves as notice that GM reserves the right to redirect your vehicle allocation or take other recourse prescribed by the Dealer Sales and Service Agreement." Dealerships, consider this GM's one and only warning. We'll all be watching.
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