In North America, Ford Motor Co. is slowing the pace of its dealership consolidations, forming smaller retailing groups and rebuffing some dealers who want to merge.
Ford's dealership consolidations, Auto Collections, have had a short and troubled history. So far, Ford has created only a patchwork of market consolidations, not a consistent retailing formula.
Auto Collections typically are owned jointly by Ford and investing dealers. Currently, there are five Auto Collections in the USA.
Ford needs time to learn what works, said Ross Roberts, president of the Ford subsidiary implementing the new retailing ventures. 'We want to get things right,' he said.
Ford has learned it is hard to throw off the old model - a dealership run by a stronger entrepreneur - and replace it with a corporate entity.