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Coronavirus brings new regulations, 0% interest rates to local car dealerships

Published: May. 7, 2020 at 6:02 PM CDT
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LAWTON, Okla. (TNN) - Car dealerships have stayed open throughout the coronavirus pandemic, though they do have some new rules and regulations to follow.

"Upfront when this really all started up, we really started reinforcing wearing masks, cleaning and sanitizing everywhere that you touch, areas after any customers have been in one, or any areas that can be touched we’re spraying them down,” said Darrel Smith with John Holt Auto Group.

"We have no cars on the showroom floor which is completely different for us here. But it’s what we feel is necessary so people aren’t going around and touching and getting inside and leaving germs inside the car or on the car doors, handles, etc,” said Bridget Randle, owner of Classic Lawton Chevrolet.

"We’ve asked that customers limit their shopping visits to 2 persons per shoppers, but we also have building occupancy limits. In new car dealerships those are usually by area so the service area can have a certain occupancy limit, that will vary from dealership to dealership,” said Craig Billingsley, Dealer Owner of Billingsley of Lawton.

Despite being in tough times, the dealerships are doing their part to help front-line workers. Whether that be offering free oil changes, buying meals, or offering lower rates.

"I believe everybody likes to be appreciated and recognized. That we recognize that what they’re doing is helping to keep all of us safe, our customers, our families, our employees. We’re proud to be able to recognize that,” Billingsley said.

"Lawton – Fort Sill is our community so we’re just trying to do our part to help. I know we’re a business that sells automobiles, but we can do some other things and that’s what we’re going to do. At the end of the day we’re all Americans and this is affecting America, not just us, it’s affecting America. We as workers and citizens here in the Lawton Fort Sill area, we’re just trying to take care of each other,” said Ervin Randle, Owner of Classic Lawton Chevrolet.

Most dealerships are also offering special rates for those looking to buy an automobile. More specifically, zero percent interest for 84 months and deferred payments for six months.

"There’s a lot of vehicles that they’re doing that, interest rates are really low right now. So, I’d stress it’s a really good time to buy and it’s safe. It’s not just us, other dealers are taking precautions that are needed right now but we’re trying to take the extra steps to make sure there’s safety for our customers and employees,” Smith said.

If you are interested in buying a car, the dealerships just ask that you take precautions to keep yourself, the staff and other customers safe.

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