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May 07, 2012 10:27 PM

Hail Drops Mitchell Car Prices

Mitchell, SD

Work had not stopped at Iverson Chrysler in Mitchell, even though it was already almost an hour past closing time.

"Hundreds and hundreds of phone calls; hundreds of people in. We get internet hits; hundreds of those," General Manager Tim Herrl said.

Herll says all the calls are because of a hail storm. Every vehicle on the lot has damage. The dealership spent much of Monday deciding what to do. By evening, officials decided all the customers calling for a deal will get one.

"We sell it as 'what you see is what you get,'" Herrl said. "It's gonna have a damage disclosure. We're gonna drop the price huge, He said. "Nineteen to $20,000 off a full-sized truck."

That's exactly what Joe Schumacher banked on. He drove to Mitchell from Beresford. He'll go home in a new truck. There are a lot of dents in the hood, but his wallet won't be dented as much as it could have been.

"You can buy a $55,000 truck for $37,000. It just makes sense," Schumacher said.

Few vehicles are in showroom condition but that hasn't stopped the traffic. Herll says it's unlike anything he's ever seen. He expects such a backlog at body shops that he says it makes more sense to sell off the inventory instead of repairing it. He hopes the dealership comes out ahead or at least breaks even. 

"I've got a daughter at home who's gonna probably get a later model car than she thought she was gonna get, but it's gonna look like a Titleist instead of a car," Herrl said.

Dealership officials are still figuring out how to sell damaged used cars, because the process is more involved.

  • Business
  • Industry
  • Mitchell, SD

This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:
A misspelling was corrected in this story.

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