Lithia Motors Inc.'s revenue hit a third-quarter record, driven largely by increased new- and used-vehicle sales, higher average vehicle selling prices and strong gross profit per vehicle.
Net income totaled $307.9 million, nearly double the $158.8 million from a year earlier. Lithia had 209 U.S. dealerships in 2020, but the group has been on an acquisition binge throughout 2021, bolstering the current number of dealerships to 265. Lithia’s April acquisition of Michigan's Suburban Collection alone added 34 dealerships.
Revenue for the Medford, Ore., retailer climbed 70 percent to $6.17 billion.
Adjusted net income more than doubled to $342 million, from $160 million in the third quarter of last year.
Lithia continued its dealership acquisition tear in the third quarter, with purchases in Alabama, California, Texas and Georgia. It also expanded into Canada — the group's first international acquisition — when it bought Pfaff Automotive Partners on Aug. 30.
Lithia's third-quarter dealership acquisitions combined are expected to generate annual revenue of $1.7 billion, the company noted.
"Year-to-date we have acquired $6.2 billion in annualized revenue and are pacing ahead of schedule toward our goal of achieving $50 billion in revenue and $50 of earnings per share by 2025," Lithia CEO Bryan DeBoer said in a statement Wednesday. "The pipeline is robust and we continue to identify accretive deals that strategically expand our network while meeting our disciplined return thresholds."