The National Automobile Dealers Association may bar managers of factory-owned dealerships from sitting on its board of directors.
It may even boot factory stores out of the association.
The NADA policy and bylaws committee is mulling these changes to reflect the association's opposition to manufacturer-owned dealerships.
NADA has let managers of factory stores run for the board for less than a year.
The board changed its bylaws during NADA's annual convention in February, eliminating the requirement that a director must have an ownership interest in a dealership.
Instead, director candidates must simply be a dealer, general manager or executive manager and have at least a limited financial interest in a dealership, such as a share of the profits.
No factory-store managers hold board seats.
NADA changed its mind about factory stores after watching how Ford Motor Co. operated its Auto Collection retail chain for more than a year. Ford took controlling interest in Auto Collections in Tulsa, Okla., and Salt Lake City.
'Factory partnership becomes factory control,' said Mike Morrissey, NADA spokesman. 'We actively oppose factory ownership in retailing. With that being a guiding principle, we have to make sure all our bylaws match up with that.'
The policy and bylaws committee is getting advice from the NADA legal staff before it decides whether to change the bylaws. If the committee votes to alter the bylaws, the revisions would require approval from the board of directors.
The next board meeting is during NADA's annual convention Jan. 22-25, 2000, in Orlando, Fla.