General Motors Co.’s (NYSE:GM) Cadillac, still at work on a multi-decade turnaround, has offered buyouts to 400 dealers as it tries to improve customer service in the midst of new model launches.
Cadillac is offering its 400 smallest U.S. dealers as much as $180,000 if they would rather give up their franchise than make the investment necessary to meet a host of new standards being imposed by the brand.
The new dealer program is called Project Pinnacle, and it is meant to get dealer operations equal to or even above those of other high-end luxury cars.
Automotive News adds:
Project Pinnacle, which begins Jan. 1, overhauls how Cadillac distributes incentives to its dealers by separating stores into five tiers based predominately on sales volume. Larger stores can earn the biggest incentives by meeting the most stringent standards, while the smallest stores would have more relaxed requirements but be barred from stocking vehicles on site, instead having customers order vehicles through a virtual showroom approach.
Cadillac has been at the work necessary to potentially catch larger rivals, including Mercedes, BMW and Lexus. The GM division’s sales for the first eight months of the year hit 103,918, down 7% compared to the same period in 2015. BMW’s sales for the same period were 204,744, down 8.3%. Mercedes sales were at 241,890, up 1.3%.