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Local impact on winter car sales follows national trend - KOAM TV 7

Local impact on winter car sales follows national trend

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Freezing temperatures have caused a sharp decline in car sales nationwide, which is having an impact locally.

Although rates for buying a car are generally lower this time of year, many customers say it is not worth the effort.

"I do not enjoy being in the cold," Pittsburg resident Kelynn Heardt said. "Driving around and looking at cars on car lots out in the elements is not something that I would want to do and I would assume that others would not want to either."

Locally, sales are down, but vehicle maintenance is up.

"People want to make sure they have fresh tires," said Mike McCann, General Manager of Fletcher Nissan in Joplin. "They want to make sure their thermostats, water pumps, things like that are checked out so they are not stranded out on the road in the cold temperatures with kids and little ones on their way to work and school."

Kelynn Heardt is just one of many customers needing vehicle maintenance over the past few days.

"With the cold weather, when I was leaving school the other day, my brakes were kind of sticking and not working, so with a commute every day, it is something that I definitely need to have," Heardt said.

Auto mechanics at Fletcher Nissan say they have seen a significant increase in the number of vehicles towed in over the past few days and that most problems they see could have been prevented if drivers had gone in for more regular maintenance checks, especially on the car batteries, coolant levels and tires.

"People want to make sure that they have fresh tires on the ground for better traction," McCann said.

Although they are staying busy in the service department right now, McCann says they are looking forward to warmer weather when sales will go back up.

"Summertime is kind of where it's at if I'm doing car shopping," Heardt said.

"When the weather breaks, we do get a little bit more excited," McCann said. "It's easier for us to get around the lot as well and we won't have people slipping and sliding around."

Local auto mechanics recommend keeping up with your regular maintenance checks and oil changes to minimize any weather-related problems.

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