Both ture observations.
That is not entirely ture. I live in Houston and have done so since the early 70's. Most every vehicle is available here and seen on a daily basis including Ferrari. Because Houston is still growing there is opportunity for more and more dealerships. If you live in a city or small town that is not growing rapidly the opportunity to add another sucessful dealership is limited. Because vehicles are major investments a new model is not usually purchased on a whim and the customer is more comfortable with what he knows. Typically GM, Ford, and Dodge have been around for a very long time in any decent sized town. In the 70's you did not see as many imports in Houston as you do now. I dont exagerate when I say that half or more vehicles on the road are Japanese and that trend is growing. The clostest Toyota dealership to me is my far busier in the service department than probably the largest Chevy dealer ship in the country where my son works part time. And don't equate that to a lack of reliabibliy. The majority of traffic in the Toyota service department is for the quick lube center which also rotates and balances tires, and changes batteries. YES all vehicles have problems and yes you typically only hear about the ones with problems. You more often hear about problems than you do reliability. When I worked for the GM dealership the shop was the money maker, dealers bought franchises so that they could sell a product that was going to need to be serviced. Oldsmobile warranty work was our most frequent customer by a huge percentage and yes dealerships are credited for the warranty work that they perform. Warranty work is an easy sale, the customer does not have to authorize the work therefore warranty work is a major income segment in the service department. There is a problem with that however, warranty work was/is often troublesome to diagnose and does not return as much profit as does regular non warranty repair work. Absolutely the best most profitable work is routine maintence work. There is no lost time in diagnosis and typically the customer knows what he needs to have done before he gets there. You do not have to call him back to tell him what it will cost and get authorization to perform the work. The Japanese auto makers seem to have recognise these facts and reliability is probably why Toyota has become one of the Big 3.