Junior Brubeck’s spent more than a half-century selling Chrysler vehicles, servicing Chrysler vehicles and promoting Chrysler vehicles.
Just because Chrysler wants to sever ties with him as part of the automaker’s bankruptcy reorganization — the automaker included his Jim Clark Motors on a list of 789 dealers nationwide that would lose their Chrysler affiliations in the coming weeks — Brubeck isn’t about to turn his back now.
Chrysler may want to drop Jim Clark Motors, but Brubeck and his Jim Clark Motors want to keep selling and servicing Chryslers, Jeeps and Dodges.
“We had no idea they would take a college town, with 100,000 people, and leave it without any representation of the product,” Brubeck said, soon after receiving the news Thursday morning. “We’re not going to just lay down and play dead with this deal.
“The sad part of this deal is it was forced by the government, for Chrysler to do this. That’s the wrong thing to have happen. If people are concerned, they should call their congressman. We can get a reversal of this thing.”
Brubeck, the dealership’s owner, plans to appeal Chrysler’s decision. He expects a bankruptcy judge to rule on the proposed cancellation of dealership agreements June 9.
There’s plenty at stake. Jim Clark Motors has 47 full- and part-time employees; the dealership’s sales generate tax revenues to support community services; and customers would find themselves leaving town for sales and service.
The Lawrence Chamber of Commerce decried Chrysler’s move, noting that Lawrence’s “immediate and long-term future is bright” for a turnaround.
We hope that their appeal is quickly heard, and that the … franchise is quickly reinstated for the benefit of all in our community,” said Hank Booth, the chamber’s director of government and community affairs.