By on September 6, 2015


AutoNation won’t sell any cars with open recalls, used or new, at its dealerships, according to Automotive News.

AutoNation CEO Mike Jackson said the costly policy would mean that roughly 5 percent to 10 percent of cars on its lots would be unsellable at any one time. The change in policy for AutoNation comes while different bills work their way through Congress that could prohibit used car dealers to sell cars without recall repair work.

“The recall situation for the U.S. auto industry is a black eye. It is a dysfunctional nightmare that the industry should be ashamed of, and customers are right to be angry and confused,” Jackson told Automotive News. “As part of the industry, we have to hold a mirror up and say, ‘What can we do better as a company?'”

It’s unclear how or who would repair the used vehicles. Presumably the recall work would need to be done at manufacturer service locations, but it’s not clear how AutoNation would work with manufacturers to clear the recall work.

Under current regulations, new cars can’t be sold with open recalls, but used cars can be sold while subject to a recall. Dealership giant CarMax says it tells used car buyers if their new car has an open recall, but doesn’t do the repair work itself.

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7 Comments on “AutoNation Won’t Sell Any Cars Subject To Recalls...”

  • avatar
    87 Morgan

    Essentially AutoNation is putting the onus back on the consumer to remedy the recall issue prior to trade in. Used car managers at the store level will be that much more diligent with trade ins and those that have an open recall will be worth less than those without, and in some cases substantially. Capital is not free and they are not going to tie up 20k in your trade in wel it sits for 90 days waiting for work to be done.

  • avatar

    The larger problem is manufacturers being too lazy. My Mazda 6 has the Takata airbag recall. But Mazda said before end of year no parts. ‘s I basically couldn’t really sell it now at a decent price due to Mazda dragging the repair for over a year now.

    I generally agree with prohibition to sell cars with open recalls, but like t o see the pressure on OEM, not the dealer or myself.

    • 0 avatar

      I don’t think manufacturers are being lazy; it is time consuming to produce and QA the replacement parts for a recall that big.

      I feel your frustration though. For some reason BMW did passenger side first, now I’m waiting on parts for the driver’s side. I hadn’t considered the impact on the car’s value. Hopefully it doesn’t matter as much selling privately (assuming my car is still worth enough for that to be a bearable experince :-( ).

  • avatar

    My daughter just bought another car from AutoNation. I have come to think of them in a pretty good way. I’m sure someone will disagree but I like what he had to say.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    Hmm, I like this. Suddenly, I want to do business with them.

  • avatar

    “It’s unclear how or who would repair the used vehicles.”

    Uh. You take it to a dealer who services that make…?

    I’m an independent dealer and that’s what I do – just take it to a franchise dealer. I’ve rarely had argument over a legitimate warranty claim (and sometimes skated by some questionable ones) but NEVER been denied a recall. In fact, I’ve bought a few cars off the block with announcements like an SRS light (’08 Rio) and Inop Power Steering (’10 HHR) that turned out to be recall items, so good on me for stealing them.

    I don’t know how other small dealers do it, but I try to make it part of our recon process to ensure recalls are completed IF a remedy is available. However, if its not, I do make a point to let the ultimate retail buyer know so they can follow up and take care of it when a fix is available. I see no point in forcing a dealer to hold a unit back from retail because a recall isn’t available to ANYONE.

    A friend of mine is an LGM at CarMax and I believe they do the same thing – take open recall cars to franchise dealers for the work.

    • 0 avatar

      I was going to say this as well.

      “Presumably the recall work would need to be done at manufacturer service locations, but it’s not clear how AutoNation would work with manufacturers to clear the recall work.”

      Jose or Jeff drives the Camry to the Toyota dealer, and they fix it.

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