by Christopher Freeburn | February 11, 2013 12:57 pm
Ford (NYSE:F) wants its dealers to upgrade their facilities, and will even help dealers pay for the cost of renovations.
The auto giant told attendees at the National Automobile Dealers Association Convention and Expo in Orlando, Fla., that it will match remodeling costs, dollar for dollar, up to $750,000, the Detroit News noted.
All 3,100 Ford dealers can participate in the program. Prior upgrade incentive programs have had sales volume or customer satisfaction score requirements. Company officials did not say how much Ford expects the program to cost.
An industry survey found that more than 70% of Ford dealerships in leading markets are planning to remodel their dealerships.
Rival General Motors (NYSE:GM) is assisting with the financing for renovations at its Chevrolet dealerships. GM is requiring dealers to conform to certain sales, marketing and service requirements to get the financing.
Car dealers have resisted automaker efforts to promote uniform appearances at dealerships.
Last month, Ford announced that it would double its quarterly dividend to 10 cents per share. The automaker resumed paying dividends in 2012 after suspending them during the economic downturn.
Shares of Ford rose fractionally in Monday midday trading.
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