YAKIMA--The economic recession claims another Yakima car dealership. Del Harris Motors will close its doors at the end of the year.
Hertz Car Sales closed for good on Sunday, now Del Harris says they're shutting down. Mike Harris, the dealership's owner, thinks we are starting to see a trickle-down effect. The recent closings may just be the start.
Del Harris sells trucks and SUV's. High gas prices crippled sales early this year.
That led the Harris family to consider shutting down the business. Even though gas prices are way down, the credit crisis has kept this small dealership from selling enough vehicles.
Del Harris Motors has been selling cars for 26 years. Mike Harris says this is the worst climate for car sales he has ever seen. He expects it to get worse in the near future.
"I [think] within the next year probably 30 to 40 percent of the Yakima [dealerships] will be gone," Mike Harris said. "I think Yakima itself has too many car dealers for the size of this town."
Mike Harris says the economic situation is especially hard on family-owned dealerships that can't offer financing.
They will still be selling cars in the lot on 16th and Fruitvale. The Harris family is leasing it out to a dealer with deeper pockets.