LetsPlayArmis, if I remember correctly the maintenance parts like filters and so on were marked up about a 100% and even at that the retail was still below the Fiat prices.
There were 2 major problems associated with taking on that Fiat franchise. Every mechanic there let out a collective groan when it was announced and we were told that we “had negative attitudes” and that “Fiat was going to be a valued addition to the dealership”. Ha.
Just a few weeks after this announcement, management also became a bit disillusioned when the first 2 truckloads of new Fiats arrived. This was in September and the new model year Subarus and VWs were arriving also. Management discovered that that every single car on those 2 transport trucks was actually new from the year before. This effectively made them 2 model years old and they weren’t even off the truck yet…
We also faced a situation with needing parts that were factory OEM only and could not be obtained in the aftermarket. So what happened is that 2 Fiats were brought into the shop, placed on racks in the back corner, and became organ donors so we could keep the sold cars on the road.
Every single warranty claim related to cannibalization of parts was rountinely kicked back for BS reasons and when the sum total of denied claims reached about 10 grand the service manager finally called the distributor in Houston to sort it out. That’s when he got a “This number is no longer in service” message. That was followed a year or so later by the dealer going out of business.