COCONUT CREEK, Fla. -- Gunther Volkswagen outsells every VW dealership in the United States by offering cutthroat deals and breaking lots of rules -- especially those governing store appearance.
Three psychedelic VW Microbuses from the 1960s and 1970s are parked by the entrance. Inside is a gargantuan poster of guitarist Jimi Hendrix and blaring rock music.
Two life-size statues of demonic figures used in Volkswagen's wacky "GTI Fast" series of commercials flank new models and dozens of old VWs in mint condition.
Airbrushed VW car hoods hang on the walls. The place is filled with totem poles, palm trees, posters and gas pumps from the 1950s and 1960s.
Welcome to the playground of Casey Gunther, a 52-year-old dealer whose showroom defies the VW Group of America design standards forbidding almost all of Gunther's '60s accouterments.
But the rule enforcers haven't cracked down because, for the past seven years, Gunther's Coconut Creek store has been the No. 1-selling VW dealership in America. Even in the tough economy, the store is likely to set a sales record this year.
Last year, Gunther Volkswagen of Coconut Creek sold 3,331 new vehicles. Through October of this year it sold 2,847, 2 percent above the first 10 months of 2008.
The store has sold nearly twice as many cars as the No. 2 VW dealership -- which happens to be Gunther Volkswagen of Fort Lauderdale. That store is run by Gunther's father, Joe, and Casey Gunther's older brother, Jay.
The Fort Lauderdale store is where Casey honed his selling skills. But since 2001 he has run the family's Coconut Creek store, about 12 miles away.