The peak body representing new car Dealers has expressed concern over General Motors’ (GM) announcement that it will be launching a new vehicle brand.
“The launch of GMSV poses many questions and it seems unthinkable that shortly after ruthlessly dismantling the Holden Dealer network GM can simply be allowed to launch a new brand,” said AADA CEO James Voortman.
“GM remains in dispute with a number of Dealers and most who have settled did so under duress, accepting the inadequate compensation on offer. Even a last minute request from the Federal Government to settle the dispute through arbitration was rebuffed by GM,” he said.
“GM has burned so much goodwill after taking so much from Australian taxpayers, yet here they are about to start another business,” he said.
“After a decade of treating consumers, businesses and the Government with contempt, how can we have faith that GM will change its ways,” he said.
“Over the past two years we have seen the ACCC successfully take action against a number of Manufacturers. We are also seeing Honda and Mercedes-Benz making significant changes to their distribution models. We really do need stronger franchise laws similar to those in the United States,” said Mr Voortman.
“We know Senator Deborah O’ Neill has written to ASIC asking them to investigate a potential phoenixing situation regarding GMSV. We also know that last year, only months before announcing it was dumping the Holden brand, General Motors changed its corporate structure,” he said.
“It is important to get to the bottom of these issues as GM will have significant liabilities in Australia for many years to come,” he said.
“There are 1.6 million Holdens on our roads, the second most of any brand. The Government needs assurances that General Motors has set aside funds to honour consumer law obligations, pay warranty claims, complete safety recalls and supply vehicle parts,” said Mr Voortman.
“The Senate Inquiry looking into GM’s operations in Australia should strongly consider calling GM back to answer more questions,” he said.