Exclusive Plymouth Dealers

PeugFra

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The corporation could only console them by projecting growth for the intermediate class in the coming years: "68 percent market share by 1965."

The real 1965 market share for intermediates was around 20%. So that one didn't work out.

Still, with this kind of projections in mind, and with the higher Plymouth sales volume with respect to Chrysler's, not all new establishements, DE or private, could be conceived as Chrysler-Plymouth duals. For instance, in March 1962 11 out of a total of 44 DE outlets were Plymouth-only, spread all over the nation.

Especially for metropolitan markets a certain number of volume-selling Plymouth-onlys was called for. In the correct suburban locations, of course. But reading the future is a difficult job. March, 1962 it was thought that there was room for 1,500 Plymouth franchises in excess of the Chrysler franchises, needed to meet the projected exploding demand for intermediates. Be that as it may, that's the reason why also in the Sixties new Plymouth exclusives were being opened.

We already know of First Avenue Plymouth in Cedar Rapids, IA, and King Solomon Motors, Morristown, TN. Also Flatlands Plymouth, Inc., 2222 Flatbush Ave, Brooklyn, NY, "New York State's Largest Plymouth Dealer" is such a Sixties establishment:

FlatlandsBrooklyn1967.jpg


Their dealer account number 62091 must have been issued in May or June, 1963 (see the Old Dealer Codes thread for the magematics). From 1976 on, Flatlands Plymouth is replaced by Kings Plaza Chrysler Plymouth, Inc., and after that in 1982 by World Chrysler Plymouth, Inc., all operating at the same address. Any reminiscenses, Brooklyn members?

It's only when Plymouth sales started declining by the late Seventies that the need for Plymouth franchises to outnumber the Chrysler franchises disappeared.
 

PeugFra

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I don't have the franchise data for the Seventies and Eighties, but I was looking at production numbers compiled by Gerard Wilson at Allpar.

1977:
535,417 Plymouth
212,151 Chrysler

1987:
457,433 Plymouth
337,641 Chrysler

The real fall in Plymouth production numbers is later (I stated that incorrectly in my previous post), but the difference between total Plymouth and total Chrysler production decreased considerably.

That may have been one reason less to maintain separate Plymouth outlets.
 

amazinblue82

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Something from the "archives".

Less raw "data" as much as raw "anecdotes" from a former Chrysler employee engineer turned racer turned a respected auto writer.

Patrick Bedard.

Knowledgeable and plugged in (he personally knew the "suits" deciding Plymouth's fate) and shared his opinion back in 2000.

Might match up a bit with some data you've dug up.

Source: After Years of Parental Abuse, Plymouth Succumbs

1662312532087.png
 

PeugFra

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For this one the internet seems useless:

BelleroseBellerose.jpg


Bellerose Plymouth in Bellerose, NY. Not even the address is known.

Any Long Islanders here that are familiar with the place? Who can determine the year going by the cars in the pic?
 
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amazinblue82

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For this one the internet seems useless:

View attachment 556243

Bellerose Plymouth in Bellerose, NY. Not even the address is known.

Any Long Islanders here that are familiar with the place? Who can determine the year going by the cars in the pic?
map 6.png
1662423012045.png


I don't know my "A" bodies that well but I believe the Cuda in the showroom is 1967-69 design.

The yellow car has a distinctive backend (but doesnt look like "Fury" to me), but I don't know my Belvedere's (GTX?) that well either. That car also looks like its got the round marker light too by the bumper -- I thought those didnt show up til 1968.

Last, that definitely not a '69 MY rear end (the first MY for fusies) on that yellow car be it a B or a C Plymouth but again I defer to somebody who knows for sure on the MY.

Oh, looking over the hood of the Cuda, there is something blue in the showroom with a "fast top" so that would be indicative of '67-'68 MY, and perhaps the one C in the showroom, potentially making yellow car a B body.

My guess is circa 1967-68 MY dealership photo.
 
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PeugFra

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Bellerose Nassau Ply Inc 250 80 Jericho Turnpike. Dealer number 62278.

You knocked me off my feet! You must have access to some very special sources, sir! Would you mind telling more about them?

Dealer number #62278 was issued in August or September 1963.

My guess is circa 1967-68 MY dealership photo.

Which means that the dealership was in existence around then. Taken together the additional info points at a Sixties establishment, just like Flatlands Plymouth somewhat closer to NYC.

Note the geographically inspired names of both dealerships. That was typical of DE outlets. As the Market Representation Program moved from market to market, the chances are good that both were established during the same reorganization campaign.
 

tallzag

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@PeugFra I have two complete dealer lists from circa late 1969 and one from 8/23/1970. Complete with all the dealer numbers and addresses.

Since Bellerose was on my list means it was around until at least late 1970 but keep in mind they didn't always purge the dealer lists very fast.
 

PeugFra

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Do they have the same format as the 1986 Dealer Directory?

1986-dealers-001.jpg
 

PeugFra

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@tallzag:
And while we're at it, could you check for these two, that must have been around in 1970:

First Avenue Plymouth, Cedar Rapids, IA
Mason Chrysler-Plymouth, Royal Oak, MI


This one I read from a very unclear internet pic, so is this correct:

62091 Flatlands Plymouth, Brooklyn, NY
 

tallzag

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Format is quite a bit different, does not say on it when they became a dealer for example.

First Avenue Ply Inc 3237 First Avenue SE Cedar Rapids, IA 64405

Mason Chrysler Plymouth 1430 S WOODWARD AVE Royal Oak, MI 61788

Format is Dealer Name, Street, City, State, Zip, Dealer Code. Has a bunch of other columns and don't know what most of them mean.
 

PeugFra

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Maybe I should have said: "check for the dealer codes" of the three dealerships I listed. They are absent from the 1986 Dealer Directory. But comparing the dealer code with the origination dates there I can mostly estimate the start of the franchise.

Especially the dealer code for Mason Chrysler Plymouth could be interesting, because maybe they "inherited" it from Northwood Plymouth Sales.

Can you give an example of the columns that come after the Dealer Code column? I would expect that the car lines covered by the franchise are somehow indicated.
 
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PeugFra

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Maybe I should have said: "check for the dealer codes" of the three dealerships I listed.

My bad! You already wrote the dealer codes for First Avenue and Mason! I mistakenly read them as ZIP codes.

Let's see what they say.

61788 Mason Chrysler Plymouth: January-February 1962, and no, this is not inherited from Northwood Plymouth Sales;
64405 First Avenue Plymouth: somewhere during the first months of 1968, probably. Which makes it the youngest Ply-only in the lot.

So, thanks!
 

tallzag

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Anytime @PeugFra Hoping to publish the list at some point, been trying to get it into an excel spreadsheet to be able to do so.
 

tallzag

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Up to 8811 individual dealer codes on the list but keep in mind that includes a few doubles (enter them in twice for two different addresses), all vendors, parts houses, corporate accounts, etc.
 

PeugFra

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Finally I have a nice data set of Plymouth exclusives over the years. Between brackets their proportion within the total number of Plymouth franchises. Figures are per Jan. 1:

1956: 0
1957: 77 (0.9%)
1958: 195 (2.5%)
1959: 176 (2.8%)
1960: 252 (6.3%)
1961: 1,596 (44.7%)
1962: 1,099 (33.7%)
1963: 741 (24.0%)
1964: 615 (17.8%)
1965: 614 (16.8%)
1966: 603 (15.8%)
1967: 528 (14.0%)
1968: 425 (11.1%)
1969: 366 (9.5%)
1970: 296 (7.9%)

In 1963 Chrysler started a campaign to expand its dealership ranks, and that had a favorable effect on the Ply-onlys as well.

So from that year on the sharp decrease that was still going on among ex DeSoto dealers is being offset by opening new exclusive Plymouth outlets. This keeps the number of Ply-onlys steady until about 1967-1968, when a new decrease sets in.

Now to find those Seventies numbers ...
 
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PeugFra

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Let's forget about the production numbers in post #43! The true story must be different.

The drop-off in Ply-onlys that sets in about 1967-1968 was accompanied by another development: the rise of the multiple-franchise dealership. In this Chrysler was not different from Ford or GM. It was the next method to reduce overhead per sold car. Besides, because of falling dealership profits more and more dealers simply left the profession, so the concentration of selling points often was the only solution.

Plymouth's sister brand Dodge, for instance, mainly represented by single-line dealerships in the early Sixties, grew its number of multiple-line dealerships considerably:

Dodge multiples
1963: 456 (18.4%)
1964: 652 (23.0%)
1965: 730 (24.0%)
1966: 730 (23.3%)
1967: 738 (23.6%)
1968: 1,018 (31.2%)
1969: 1,109 (33.4%)
1970: 1,137 (34.7%)

Note the sharp rise after the end of the Chrysler dealership expansion program. That was all long before the sales numbers of Plymouth fell, so that explanation in post #43 simply does not hold.
 
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PeugFra

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The 1986 Dealer Directory gives a good overview of the situation that resulted from the gradual elimination of Ply-onlys. For every dealer account number, the car lines are listed that are covered by the account. Only nine dealerships were Plymouth exclusives by April 18, 1986:

36727 Kirk Motors, Inc., 1801 O St, Lincoln, NE
37345 Manchester Plymouth, Route 83 Tolland Tpke, Talcottville, CT
37581 Theodore F. Eberhardt, Inc., 344 Main St, Egypt Whitehall, PA
39483 Gregory Motor Co., Jefferson St, Boydton, VA
39796 Arrington Motor Sales, 300 Alexandria St, Warrenton, VA
64995 Bayport Garage, 342 5th Ave N, Bayport, MN
These had all been DeSoto-Plymouth dealers.

64358 Wilson Motors, Inc., Hwy 14 & Foundry Dr, Richland Center, WI
The franchise relation originated in 1959, but I'm not sure which lines they handled at that point, DeSoto-Plymouth or just Plymouth.

61838 West End Motors, Inc., Canton Rd, Steubenville, OH
This was established in 1962 and would grow into the largest Plymouth-only dealership in the USA (and beyond), concentrating on fleet sales and export.

67557 Bennett Northampton Plymouth, Inc., 21st St & Siegfried Ave, Northampton, PA
As an oddity, this one came into being only in 1985. Mr. Bennett followed a business philosophy completely opposite to the multiple-franchise dealership approach and presided over a string of dealerships in the area, also for Ford and GM products.

All these Ply-onlys are located in smaller communities. Such dealerships had already been eliminated from the metropolitan areas by then, where the tendency for large, multiple-franchise dealerships first played out. That's probably also the reason why the list is still (or again) numerically dominated by ex DeSoto dealers.

As was widely reported at the time, when Plymouth was terminated at the end of 2001, just three Ply-onlys from the above list were still in business: Bennett, Eberhardt and Kirk.

EberhardtEgypWhitehall.png
 
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