America’s top selling Suzuki dealer is switching it up with a much more popular brand. Wichita Suzuki has begun selling Subaru cars as it prepares for the end of the Suzuki era in America.
Faced with an end to Suzuki sales, proprietor Scott Pitman bought a stake in a Subaru store owned by a business partner and moved it to his former Suzuki store. At its former location, the Subaru store was selling less than 50 cars a month, and Pittman is hoping to double that figure within a year. Last year, Pitman sold about 1,300 new Suzukis and around 1,800 used cars. Unlike most stores, dealers at Pitman’s store are salaried, rather than paid commission. Automotive News explains Pitman’s rationale for the pay structure
That encourages salespeople to find the best fit for buyers rather than steer them toward the most profitable vehicles, he said. Subaru buyers generally also do lots of Internet research on their potential purchases, making the role of the salesperson more one of helping the shopper navigate the process rather than trying to push a vehicle on them, Pitman said.
And of course, Pitman’s store won’t be slacking on subprime sales either
Pitman said about half of his Suzuki vehicle buyers last year came to the dealership through credit leads. Those are generated on the dealership Web site or third-party shopping sites when a person fills out credit information to determine how expensive of a car he or she can afford. Pitman said he could put many of those buyers into a new low-priced Suzuki rather than a used car. He said his operation will continue to cater to buyers with poor credit at the Subaru and used-car stores.