Partners expanded their General Motors store counts by two, including buying a dealership from public auto retailer Lithia Motors Inc., while other dealers and groups expanded their dealership holdings in separate third-quarter and fourth-quarter deals.
Here's a look at the deals involving domestic and import dealerships and stores in Ohio, Michigan, Missouri, Iowa and Virginia.
One transaction involved an auto retailer ranked on the Automotive News list of the top 150 dealership groups.
Partners buy two Midwest Chevy stores, including one from Lithia Motors
Stephen Shane, Seth Severin and Kevin Chernikoff purchased two Chevrolet stores in the last five months — one in Ohio and another in Michigan that was owned by Lithia Motors for just over a year.
The three partners on July 26 purchased Mathews Chevrolet-Buick in Bucyrus, Ohio. The store, renamed Chevrolet of Bucyrus, was purchased from Tim Mathews, Tom Weston, Dave Columber and Doug Moore, said Shane, dealer principal of the Bucyrus dealership.
The Bucyrus store will no longer sell Buick vehicles. Shane and his partners sold the Buick franchise back to General Motors because the brand's electric vehicle plan does not make sense for the rural market the store is in, he said. Bucyrus is north of Columbus, Ohio.
Shane, Severin and Chernikoff have been business partners for 14 years, Shane said. They co-own several GM dealerships in Ohio and a Stellantis store in the state as well.
The three partners were joined by Shane's wife, Shelly Shane, in purchasing Suburban Chevrolet of Clinton in Michigan, from Lithia, on Nov. 14, Stephen Shane said. The store marks Severin, Chernikoff and the Shanes' first dealership in Michigan.
Chevrolet of Clinton is one of 34 stores acquired by Lithia in its April 2021 purchase of Michigan's Suburban Collection.
The rural market that Shane, Severin and Chernikoff operate in was a factor in both recent purchases, Stephen Shane said. The Bucyrus store creates what Shane described as a square geographical area with the partners' other Ohio stores.
"It kind of leaves us to where we own almost all the GM stores, other than a couple, for about 150 square miles probably, just because we have that whole perimeter," he told Automotive News.
Lithia, of Medford, Ore., ranks No. 2 on the Automotive News list of the top 150 dealership groups based in the U.S., retailing 260,738 new vehicles in 2021.
The Tim Lamb Group, a buy-sell firm in Columbus, represented the seller in the Ohio acquisition.