Dealer Alan Starling on Tesla's Musk, GM's dealer-performance measure, the chains of quarterly resultsJune 26
69-year-old Florida dealer Alan Starling has plenty of advice for his retail and factory colleagues. The ex-NADA chairman is lobbying the trade group to advocate more 'forcefully.' He also weighs in on the flaws of General Motors' system for assessing dealer performance and some handicaps he sees confronting Tesla CEO Elon Musk.
Stair-step plans 'are margin destroyers'June 19
A brutally honest take on 41 years as a car dealerJune 19
New Jersey dealer Steve Kalafer has survived recessions, product failures, brand-destroying incentives and self-destructing automakers. In this video, he reflects on his career with the same “fight for the customer” mindset he brings to his sideline as a documentary filmmaker. “I'm very proud that we are not afraid of any manufacturer when they are doing something wrong.”
Small dealer on battling giants for acquisitions: ‘Give us a chance’March 20
Fresh off a $12.5 million relocation of his Nissan and Subaru franchises, Iowa dealer Dave Wright is hiring and on the prowl for acquisitions. He believes smaller retailers can compete against larger groups in the hunt for dealerships by using seasoned talent and nimbly closing deals. With a focus on expansion and developing a workplace family, Wright insists: “We're way too invested now to die.”
How a dealer's reluctant son became hooked on the car businessMarch 13
Like many dealers' kids, Matt Laughridge was wary about a career in auto retailing. That changed after a fishing trip with his dad. Now at 29, he's putting his personal stamp on his family's Hyundai and Buick-GMC stores -- as well as other ventures.
Mass. dealer dishes meals to customers, leeway to employeesJune 27, 2016
At 75, former orphan Bob Moran reflects on a life in dealerships that has left him with a thriving Toyota store that serves customers hot breakfasts while allowing employees holiday time with their families and freedom to make decisions at work.
FCA dealer expands kingdom by taking shoppers off-road, selling custom-built ridesDec. 12, 2016
It's in Ralph Mahalak Jr.'s 'Dodge-red' blood to stand out from other Fiat Chrysler dealers. That's why he's built a unique 'Low Payment King' brand, off-road Jeep course and line of custom-made vehicles. Mahalak says his deviate approach and investment in employees has helped the family-run group double its number of dealerships since 2011.
Dealer Morse survived 'trial by fire'; now charts future without mentorsDec. 5, 2016
Third-generation dealer Teddy Morse always believed he would lead his family's Florida empire of stores, but not quite so soon. The 41-year-old took the helm of Ed Morse Automotive Group in July after the death of his father, Ted. Morse believes a 'trial-by-fire' entry into management, family input and focused employees will advance the group's legacy.
Morse's 3 keys: Good people, products, processesDec. 5, 2016
After his father's death in July, Teddy Morse, 41, took over his family's dealership group, founded by his grandfather in 1963. In this Q&A, he talks about his baptism by fire, the personnel policies he learned from his father and grandfather and other matters.
Instant dealer at 19, Instagram leader at 29Sept. 19, 2016
Prestige Imports CEO Brett David took over the family business at age 19 after the sudden death of his father nearly a decade ago. While the Miami exotic car dealer initially feared getting 'eaten up in the car world,' he eventually found his stride by using creative marketing, connecting with customers on social media, and staying humble in a 'materialistic business.'
Chrysler-Jeep dealer reopens terminated store, rebuilds customer baseSept. 12, 2016
Livonia Chrysler-Jeep Owner Colleen McDonald's late father always encouraged her to keep an anti-termination file handy. The contents proved useful during McDonald's lengthy fight to the U.S. Supreme Court to win back her family's store that was shuttered during Chrysler's 2009 bankruptcy. Nearly one year after restarting the Detroit-area business, McDonald continues to build her team, clients and sales.
Retailer starts over after winning store backSept. 11, 2016
Colleen McDonald, 51, fought all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court before getting back Livonia (Mich.) Chrysler Jeep in July, after losing three dealerships during the General Motors and Chrysler bankruptcies. In this Q&A, she speaks about losing the stores, getting one back and resuming operations.