MacEachern explains that when Troy-based Suburban Collection bought the Chrysler Jeep dealership over the summer, the large company with about thirty dealerships across Michigan (including Chevy and Buick dealers on Jackson Road) also had a franchise for a Fiat dealership--one of only three Chrysler doled out in Michigan. And the clock was ticking--the franchise had to open by the end of the year. Originally, Suburban had planned to put it in Novi, but "the demographics in Ann Arbor were much more in line with the Fiat brand. The Ann Arbor community is open to European styling and conscientious about fuel economy," he says.
So Suburban hurriedly bought the lot across the street, and began knocking down the former gas station on the spot, which most recently was used as a detail center for the dealership's used cars.
Another dealership poised to open by the end of the year is Mack Johnson's MINI dealership on Jackson. "We are ninety percent done. I'm working hard to get open before the end of the year," he emails.