Chrysler Group's plan to help its dealerships perform maintenance for more non-Chrysler vehicles is a win-win-win business model that will benefit the factory, dealers and consumers.
Chrysler dealerships already service some 2.6 million non-Chrysler vehicles a year. That work has come in handy in tough times, helping dealerships boost their absorption rate and cover overhead expenses when showrooms were bare.
That business ought to grow rapidly now that Chrysler's Mopar parts and service brand will offer maintenance parts for many other makes through Fiat's Magneti Marelli subsidiary. That will mean more parts business for Chrysler and Fiat, less for other automakers and aftermarket suppliers.
Being able to handle more non-Chrysler business easily also will bring more potential new- and used-car customers into dealerships, which will expose them to the stores' personnel, procedures and products. Meeting more non-Chrysler customers will help employees at Chrysler dealerships understand more about other automakers.
And the added competition with other franchised dealerships and independent repair shops ought to be good for consumers, too.