Charging On Across the US, Experience To The Front, Restraining Order Incoming?

December 12, 2022
It’s a fine Friday across the Automotive Industry as we talk about Dealers banding together to become a formidable charging network. We also talk about stand alone stores bringing experience to the forefront, as well as a leaked email seething with desperation from one startup EV maker.
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GM and Ford Dealers are doing the work to build a formidable charging infrastructure across the US as Ford and GM take the front seat

  • The much contested and debated Ford EV Dealer certification requirements will result in 1920 EV-ready dealerships. This will be the most extensive network in the US by number of locations and will place the brand in the mix with Tesla, EVgo, and Electrify America.
  • GM is also working with its dealers to provide a robust charging network. Nearly 1,000 dealers have enrolled in the level 2 charger program. The plan involves bringing up to 40K charging stations to rural America. If this happens, it will double the amount of these types of chargers in the US. Level 2 chargers are slower than Level 3 chargers, but still pack a punch and can fully charge many vehicles in a couple of hours. Perfect for parks, sports venues, and shopping malls

Experience is king as several new, stand alone dealerships are opened for Porsche and Jeep which strive to provide dedicated spaces to provide convenience, a robust shopping experience, and even walkability

  • Porsche Brooklyn highlights a new, Porsche Urban Store format is a street-level gallery with intentionally timeless styling in the heart of this creative and professional neighborhood.
  • The 10k square foot showroom features a high-end cafe, a ‘fitting room’ for customizing your new Porsche, a Porsche Lifestyle Store and a dedicated New Car Delivery area.
  • The same building houses the Brooklyn Nets training facility
  • There is a 16k sq/ft service and parts facility one block away

Christian Meunier, Jeep brand CEO; Jay Feldman, Feldman Automotive CEO, Jim Morrison, head of Jeep brand, North America gathered for a photo in the new stand-alone Feldman Jeep of Clarkson

  • “This new, free-standing Jeep store captures the heritage and the imagination of the Jeep brand and its enthusiasts,” says Jay Feldman, CEO of the Feldman Automotive Group. “We are paving a new path for future Jeep consumers.”
  • The 16k sq ft store has been designed to be uniquely Jeep and features over a dozen technicians specializing in in Jeep brand products

Amidst pressure from customers who are tired of waiting for their new Lucid motors EV,

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Kyle Mountsier, Paul Daly

Paul Daly  00:22

Welcome to Friday, it's December 9. We're all ready for Friday. We're ready for a great Saturday. We're talking about charging across the US experience in the front and loosened phone calls. loosens phone calls, I gave it away. They stopped.

Kyle Mountsier  00:40

Not lucid don't need to repeat. We want everyone to be lucid when

Paul Daly  00:45

I said this, or lucid phone call, so they're probably pretty lucid. Oh, well, it's Friday, Kyle. Today. Like it flew by. We both travel. You know, we both on the ground, respectively in Atlanta, and Atlanta, right? No, no,

Kyle Mountsier  01:05

I was just in Nashville. Oh, and I got to dealership in Nashville. It was fabulous.

Paul Daly  01:10

To me. It felt like you were traveling because you weren't here. Yeah, yeah. So we had on the ground and dealerships in Nashville, and with a bunch of fixed ops people in Princeton, and we're going to be a bunch with a bunch of dealers next week to the we got to you got to Atlanta. And then the following week, actually, we have dealers coming to Nashville for the year and extravaganza,

Kyle Mountsier  01:31

your house, he's so good. Today, just like a little bit of note, if you are not signed up ready for the year and extravaganza, I promise you, I promise you, we are going to throw things in there that you just you just are not going to expect and it's wonderful, joyous time, like have dialed in practitioner ship, understanding what the moves in the market moves last year, next year where we're headed, but also, like, we're gonna give a little bit of breath of fresh air to your week before Christmas. Yeah,

Paul Daly  02:08

we got a bunch of people coming in live to be on the show. It's gonna be a Jimmy Fallon style. Live show, Kyle and I are gonna be wearing suits. So if anything, you should show up for that. Or you can go to a Scroll down just a tad from the top of the fold. And you can click on the year and extravaganza links, you can join the LinkedIn event or the Facebook event, get access to the live stream, you be eligible to win prizes. First of all foremost, we got a PS five, we got an iPad, we might have a couple of other things we're doing. And yeah, so make sure if you can't be there in person, because we are having a small live studio audience. So if you really want to come send us

Kyle Mountsier  02:45

a DM, we can go some places. So you know from some places, that's very ambiguous. Yeah. Some places you wouldn't expect it. So you know, we have found in the flights aren't that expensive in in in Nashville. And we'll treat you some Nashville coffee and pastries and all that. Oh, yeah.

Paul Daly  03:03

Yeah. No, it's gonna be a great time. If not, Hey, join us on the live stream. You will not be sorry. Let's just say it that taking a big swing, our show producer actually produces the Emmys in New York Fashion Week, and the People's Choice Awards that just happened this week. We got the AV and the the live band from electric Jane, it's gonna be ridiculous. Okay, let's talk about a little bit news. All right, do we have anything else to talk about? Before we bounce, I think we're good

Kyle Mountsier  03:24

go to the news go to,

Paul Daly  03:26

we're gonna go to the news, we have some fun stuff, especially a little less story packs a little bit of a different type of punch. So GM, and Ford dealers doing the work to build a formidable charging infrastructure across the US. As you know, Ford and GM just really take the front seat in that effort. So on the Ford side, the much contested and debated for the Evie dealer certification requirements, it's actually going to result in about 1900 Plus chargers, level three chargers across, which will now make it the most extensive network of those types of chargers in the US. When it comes to number of locations. All of a sudden, I didn't think about that, like all of a sudden, like imagine all the Ford storage popping up on the charging network. Now I know it's probably not gonna be the most convenient thing to do. And to go for you

Kyle Mountsier  04:16

know, it's like big charging network, not where people just go to stop now, if you're like, also largest coffee shop network.

Paul Daly  04:25

I mean, you know, I knew you were gonna go there. I knew I know, you're gonna go there, but you think about like range anxiety in general. And the fact that you know, because I mean, level three chargers, right, you're in 20 minutes. You know, you're back.

Kyle Mountsier  04:39

So you know, it's available, right. And actually, for dealerships are in pretty rural areas a lot of times and you see them like I mean when I'm driving through even Tennessee or Kentucky where I drive through a lot. You see them like 40 minutes outside of major cities and our outside of major cities right off the highway, so it's still not like absolutely inconvenient when you Think about where a lot of those Ford dealerships are located in travel spots.

Paul Daly  05:04

And if you need to charge man, even 10 minutes in there to get you to the place you really want to go, yep, doesn't hurt, it doesn't hurt. You know. So I mean, this throws him in the mix with Tesla, Evie, go Electrify America now there's probably gonna be a little Ford logo logo up on whatever charging maps they have going on. GM is taking a slightly different approach, obviously more GM stores. There's a GM store, but they say within like nine miles of every home in America, something like that GM is working with its dealers to provide a really robust charging network of was like 40,000 level two chargers. So level two chargers, a little bit different than level one, they don't go or level three, they don't go as fast. But they're still pretty substantial. They can charge your car in a couple of hours, which make them perfect for like parks and sports venues and shopping malls, places where you're going to spend a couple of hours and we're talking 40,000. And if that happens, we'll double the amount of this level chargers across the country actually have a level two charger that we put up right outside up front of my office building for the community. And

Kyle Mountsier  06:07

I mean, it's just going to have to be something that pops up everywhere, you know, every parking lot is just going to have to have at, you know, five or six of them to start and probably more it's just going to be a bank of chargers. And it's just going to be something that every business. But here's the thing. I mean, if I'm dealers, I'm getting that adspace super cheap right now.

Paul Daly  06:27

All right, it's as you see them, like in upstate New York, we're just starting to see them, you've probably heard them a lot more in Nashville. But in shopping centers, and plazas and grocery stores, these big beautiful level three chargers showing up with display screens on them, and the running ads. And hey, if you're Ford, and you own the screen, it's like, what are you going to talk about? What are you talking about all the great things that Ford dealers are doing in the community around you? That sounds good. That's not going to be what goes on there, by the way? No, it's gonna end up being a price and payment, you know that without totally pricing

Kyle Mountsier  07:00

399 leases all day? Not not if

Paul Daly  07:03

we have anything to say about it. Okay, what else? Oh, yes, this. So today we're really focusing on like, kind of like what the dealer OEMs are doing in partnership with the dealers didn't give the overarching topic charges are the first thing. The second thing is just developing and leaning into experience when people are shopping for the brand.

Kyle Mountsier  07:26

This this story, just let me just start by this. This one warms my heart. These these couple little stories about how retailing experiences are coming to the dealer network just warms my heart. So

Paul Daly  07:38

I know Kyle and I in the mornings, a lot of times we're swapping stories on text message like before, and then the show gets built and Kyle popped over these two articles. And I was like, Ah, I see what you're doing here. I see what you're doing here. So several new standalone dealerships are opening for portion Jeep, not together separately, which strive to provide dedicated spaces for convenience, robust shopping experiences, and even walkability. Kind of ironic walkability to a car dealership. A Porsche of Brooklyn, highlights a new Porsche urban store concept. It's a street level gallery. Right and has intentionally timeless styling the building looks amazing. You have to check it out in the show.

Kyle Mountsier  08:17

Have you been Have you like walking through Brooklyn?

Paul Daly  08:21

Not ever in a long time. Yeah, I have. The last time I was there as visiting VaynerMedia is building but it was just like warehouses. Like you know what I mean? It was like the very beginning of the last five years of Upswing

Kyle Mountsier  08:32

well in Brooklyn was a lot different than like like New York or like downtown New York. Oh, yes. You know, and like all the brownstones all the walkability you see families walking around. And so for a retail environment for an automaker and it's a it's a pretty well off area for an automaker to be in that same type of look and feel. I mean, it just it for me, it is exactly what any automaker should be thinking in urban areas. I mean, right now, I'm just I'm saying this like in downtown Nashville, there are storefronts going up everywhere. And it was it's interesting to me that in a lot of other countries, you see these like storefront style manufacturer like buildings right where they're not dealerships, their inventory is in you know, but they are dedicated to the shopping experience and it and this store when you click in through it, make sure to take a look at a few of the pictures there's not a ton of pictures we'll see if we can find some more later for social posts. But it has kind of a cafe feel there's you know, this this fitting room for customizing that's clevers which is so smart, a lifestyle store so so thinking accessories or even like wearables, and then even a new car delivery area and understanding that hey orders are happening or a delivery experience is the highest part of maybe a car car ownership experience if that's what

Paul Daly  10:01

you want everybody else to show tomorrow.

Kyle Mountsier  10:03

Yeah, right.

Paul Daly  10:04

It's like that whole thing where you see other people doing it. Look at that guy taking delivery. Even gosh, the families buy Porsches. I don't Well, maybe I guess if you get oh, without a doubt, yeah, yeah. Especially in Brooklyn. Yeah, right. The building also houses the training facility for the Brooklyn Nets. So I think that's like, it's just the big point of this, right? Everyone can't have like a super high end. Whatever, right? Like that's Porsches brand. They're in the right neighborhood. I think the real point is contextualization for the people who are shopping in your places in the neighborhood that you're putting things in, and the urban walkability in an environment where there's really no inventory anyway, we're getting used to this. People are just maybe getting used to shopping this way experiential. There's another one kind of on the flip side of the world, not of the world, but of the OEM world anyway, Christian Unior Jeep brand CEO, Jay Feldman, Feldman automotive, who you might know, Feldman, they're the ones that have Mark Wahlberg, right. He's a partner as well. And some of the stories Yeah, they have felt some Right, right. And Jim Morrison head of the Jeep brand. His name's Jim Morrison. Pretty good. In North America, they gathered in a photo in the new standalone Feldman Jeep of Clarkson. According to owner Jay Feldman, this freestanding Jeep store captures the heritage and imagination of the Jeep brand, and its enthusiast and he says, we're paving the way for the next generation of Jeep owners. Yeah, built an experience center that is inherently cheap, it has only cheap technicians in it, and it's something we'll find pick,

Kyle Mountsier  11:36

you're gonna be like, Well, Matt, guys, I'm telling you, I know a couple other groups that are putting these up, they're just in building phase, this is just the first one of them. But typically, what you see is you see a cdjr store. And you see kind of like the Chrysler Dodge Ram side of the store, it's kind of silver and gray, and then you see the Jeep side of the store. And that's where you get the brown and the earth tones and that type of things. But it's all baked into one. And I think Jeep owners are going to love this experience. I'm sure like the exterior, you're probably you've probably got things like, you know, sideways hills and rocks and things to climb over with jeeps and then inside is definitely an experience. So type store. But this for me, this is a long time coming the Jeep brand. We talked about this, I think last week, and that Jeeps retain their value so long because the community around Jeeps move. I mean, think about what you could do with community events or you know, with your technicians explaining things about the Jeep doing some like dinners and things like that about the kids. Yeah, right. The kids Yes.

Paul Daly  12:40

How are you not gonna, like kids love to like, run over stuff and break stuff.

Kyle Mountsier  12:44

Oh, give me the opportunity. Yeah, Jeep makes the little like, the little kid cars to apps,

Paul Daly  12:49

right? Like a little kid track. Man. My little Jaden would tear that up with you. But I did I like move things around and pull things and think about creating

Kyle Mountsier  12:58

customer loyalty, creating customers for life, owning the whole family in their experience with jeep. I mean, it is for me, that's that's where a Jeep is absolutely going to win. But I think that other manufacturers can kind of take this and go, Okay, if Jeep can do that, and they're putting their store together like this, what is our store? What do our stores look like not just visibly, but experientially different than other OEMs that people actually want to be a part of?

Paul Daly  13:23

Well, speaking of a different type of experience, segue it's been caught us both a little sideways amidst pressure from customers who are tired of waiting for their new lucid motors EV leaked emails obtained by Business Insider outlines, some I'm gonna call them red zone defensive measures. And if you're not familiar with that, when you're a football, when you're about other teams about the score, it's called the Red Zone. And they've released some red zone measures, I'll call them that can lead to customers being called 14 times over weeks to stop from canceling their order. Yo. So here's here's so lucid has delivered yeah, here here. Bruce is having trouble delivering, right. They're trying to keep up. They're trying to deliver people tired of waiting. So customers are starting to call the cancel. So this email says basically, every cancellation is a failure. And so here's how it goes. When a customer calls to cancel, they're assigned to a case owner who has to call the customer within 24 hours, and then again for three consecutive days to save the order. If that doesn't work, they don't get through. It's escalated to a manager who calls five more times within five days. If that doesn't work, then a regional manager gets it and they call three more times over three days. Then and only then can the order be cancelled. They said their employees can not take any days off between December 17 and 31. I guess they're expecting when people are kind of off for the holidays. It's gonna end you're like let me button up this loose end. You want it you think

Kyle Mountsier  14:53

about the type of advertising that retail dealers doing do during that time to acquire real business right now for In stock inventory, that's what they're competing against. They're competing against real retail dollars. And

Paul Daly  15:07

and it's just the one employee says, you know, the level of desperation and the tone of the email, combined with the protocol of like just calling people over and over and over doesn't not spell high in a luxury when we're talking about $100,000 vehicles here. And future purchases, like there's going to be a lot of other options, right. So talking about alienating people I understand like, you're desperate, you're trying to do things but you'd never want to desperate Harrison right other way to emphasize that communication, key people in the family. Gosh, I don't have that person. I don't know what it is. I don't know what it is. But it's like, it just reeks to me of like that desperate relationship when someone's like, Hey, I think this isn't working out. And then they the other person just starts calling and texting. But the calling thing is what gets me again, nobody get me on the phone.

Kyle Mountsier  15:52

Not a chance, especially with the weird number on the holidays ain't happening on the mute button.

Paul Daly  15:57

How many calls you get a day from a number you don't recognize? Seven to 10 Yeah, it's not terrible, but seven to 10 Isn't that terrible? But, but either way, it's like I don't even look I don't even unless I'm expecting unless I'm expecting a call. But John Foley just chimes in and says a friend recently shared their experience to canceling their order. That wasn't great. Look, unless unless it's not something I'm expecting like who wants a phone call? Nobody wants a phone call my kids actually think it's rude to call someone without texting

Kyle Mountsier  16:28

first. That's what I tell people I'm like text me first then call me so I know that I'm answering the right

Paul Daly  16:34

pure I don't think it's rude if you call me right like if we're friends and you call me but even like with their friends like that they know like hey, we talked like I'm gonna I'm gonna text

Kyle Mountsier  16:42

I just for me this just It reeks of like Bad Internet follow up lead handling procedures that shows that you have done nothing to care for this customer in their purchase lifecycle which is not over until they take till they take delivery and that's that's that they missed the boat months ago. Not right now.

Paul Daly  17:02

That's a great point. Well on that date. We're not missing the boat today. It's a Friday rolling into a good solid weekend people are out for spending money to buying cars and getting things fixed. Get there in the mix and meet them right where they're.

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