ORLANDO, Fla. -- Dealers and manufacturers not only need to excite consumers but also must deal with governmental issues and counteract "outdated stereotypes," said Tom Purves, CEO of BMW of North America.
Manufacturers and dealers "can work together to gain greater understanding and acceptance of our industry," Purves said in his keynote speech at the NADA convention's opening ceremony here. "Few other businesses share the synergy between the manufacturer, the retailer and the customer."
Purves said dealers and automakers need to:
Purves said career opportunities are a key issue. More than 104,000 jobs are available at U.S. dealerships, he said.
"The jobs you offer are more sophisticated and better paying than those available in the so-called service economy," Purves said.
But technical careers in particular "are plagued by incorrect and outdated stereotypes," he said.
"Dealers and manufacturers need to build consumer confidence actively, especially at a time when some people might be skeptical about the long-term vitality of the industry," he said.
Making the business more transparent is one way to change the image, Purves said, adding that this could help ensure that regulations affecting vehicle financing and consumer protection "bear the mark of reason."
You may e-mail Diana T. Kurylko at [email protected]