11 June 2010

Dealers Mystified by Chevy Move

Detroit Free Press

If GM had ordered the use of Chevy over Chevrolet, this decision for consistency’s sake might have made sense, a few Chevy dealers told the Free Press today.

But to go back to an older, longer, traditional name — over a hipper, shorter name in this digital era — has them scratching their heads and trying to play nice with the “new” GM, which has been out of bankruptcy for just over a year now.

“I want to be a team player,” said Steve Cook, owner of Cook Chevrolet-Buick, just north of Flint. But, he added, he would continue to use the word Chevy in his ads and elsewhere “unless they are very committed.”

He said he agreed that going to Chevy alone would have made better sense.

Another dealer, who requested to be anonymous for fear of retribution from GM, was less diplomatic about GM’s decision to prefer Chevrolet over Chevy.

“They have lost it. I just read it. My kids love Chevy. Is my son going to say a Chevrolet Camaro?” he said. “No way. Ugh. … Crazy.”

Don Kahan, who owns a Chevrolet dealership in Lee's Summit, Mo., hadn’t heard about GM’s Chevy memo until called by a reporter. He said he would need to reflect on the decision, but noted: “It’s totally impractical to use a long word. Chevy has been associated with Chevrolet for so long.”

Finally, he added, that he prefers the shorter Chevy in digital communications. His email ends with “kahanchevy.com.”

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