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Raleigh Car Dealers Feel Effects From GM Strike

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RALEIGH — President Clinton is urging both sides in the GM strike to get the closed plants up and running.

The two week strike closed another plant Friday in Ohio. The auto workers strike is crippling production and halting assembly lines.

Dealers in the Triangle are waiting for the fallout to trickle down to them.

Chevy dealerships are about to feel the pinch from the strike. Shipments are still coming in but they are slowing down. The full effect has yet to be felt.

"Two months down the road from now is when you'll see the effect, that delay is causing a bottleneck now," new car Sales Manager Tim Hippo said.

The lot is pretty full right now with more than 400 vehicles, but in another couple of weeks you will start seeing a lot of empty spaces.

The strike has not put a damper on sales. In fact, more customers are coming in now to buy instead of waiting till later.

"With the shortage of vehicles coming out the choices are going to be fewer," car buyer Michael Whetzel said. "So I was looking at coming in while they had a large selection on the lot to go ahead and make my purchase."

Customers who ordered the newly designed Silverado pickup will have to be patient for the delivery of their new truck.

"There's been a lot of interest there, and we've taken a lot of orders, Hippo said. "However with what's already happened those orders will consequently take longer to build."

Those trucks could take as long as October to hit the lot. Other orders could be delayed at least two to four weeks.

Nearly 90 percent of GM's production has been shut down.


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