RV Dealers of Texas (RVDT) has joined the Texas Automobile Dealers Association (TADA) to support Texas Department of Transportation efforts to stop Ford Motor Co. from selling automobiles directly to consumers online. Dealers, in such a scenario, would be cut out of the transaction.
“It’s something that the RV manufacturers might try to do to us someday,” said RVDT President Jack Sisemore, owner of Sisemore Traveland, Amarillo, Texas.
Ford is challenging in the U.S. Court of Appeals a lower court ruling that upheld a finding by the Texas Motor Vehicle Division that a Ford-owned Internet web site – fordpreowned.com – was actually a dealership, which is contrary to Texas law. Ford has since closed down the site, but is appealing the ruling.
Final arguments on an appeal by Ford in the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans were on May 8.
Although, technically, the decision will only affect the states in the 5th Circuit – Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi, Karen Coffey, TADA chief council, said, “A decision will have national implications because courts often follow the precedents set by other courts.”