Carmakers that don't actively recruit and assist dealers in joint marketing programs risk a loss of sales, the study shows.
More than 30 percent of German car dealers surveyed plan to add other brands and another 29 percent are considering the possibility. The survey of 2,310 companies was conducted by Wedel University and marketing consultants UGW Dialog GmbH, based in Wiesbaden, Germany.
Manufacturers must react to these changes or face "a significant break in the value-added chain," said Michael Reitz, managing director at UGW Dialog. In the future, carmakers must "equally attract both customers and dealers."
The survey also found that manufacturers and dealers fail to share customer information. Half of the dealers don't work with manufacturer-run customer liaison systems.