Lingering Olds resentment

Radio commentary
Edward Lapham is the editor of Automotive News

Sept. 14 -General Motors has said that it will stop building Oldsmobiles some time in 2004, but there are still a lot of cheesed-off Olds dealers.

When GM announced last December that it would kill the venerable Oldsmobile brand, it promised to compensate Olds dealers.

There were some 2,800 Old dealerships, but so far, only about 600 dealers have accepted the buy-out package. Another 1,400 are still in active negotiations.

But that leaves several hundred who have hired lawyers and are ready to go to court and fight.

Money is an issue, but the stakes are much higher than that. Many Olds dealers also sell other GM brands and the hard feelings could linger quite a while.

You can reach Edward Lapham at elapham@crain.com

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