Dealership groups differ on the value of maintaining centralized, standalone facilities to handle reconditioning work for multiple stores.
Some groups have moved away from centers, preferring to incorporate recon activities into individual dealerships’ service operations. Other groups say that consolidating recon work at a central location can offer substantial economies of scale.
The 12-dealership Stanley Auto Group, headquartered in Dallas, closed its standalone facility about two years ago, says Brian Thacker, the company’s executive manager. Many of its dealerships were more than an hour’s drive from the recon center, he notes.
“A few years ago, when used-car values began to really rise, it pushed up the logistics cost of moving the cars around,” Thacker told Fixed Ops Journal.
The group’s dealerships now exert direct control over reconditioning costs and are individually accountable for such measures as turn time to prepare used cars and trucks for sale, Thacker says.
“We typically have a three- to five-day turn now,” Thacker says.