LAST CALL: Ford gets positive press for a change

A Beverly Hills, CA franchise has actually generated some good

headlines for Ford by launching a new sales division catering to gay,

lesbian, bisexual and transgender customers.



"(Gay) couples wanting to go shopping together will feel more

comfortable," said Claes Lilja, manager of the new division.



He said that, ironically, about half of those who have come in response

to the new sales division are actually heterosexual women. "They often

feel they are talked down to in a regular car dealership," he said.



The story has been picked up by Newsweek, along with other national and

local news outlets, and Jay Leno mentioned the scheme on The Tonight

Show.



And what does the venerable automaker think about this new twist on the

dealership? "They have been supportive of us," Lilja said. "At the same

time they haven't been directly involved. They have been taking a 'wait

and see' attitude."



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