IBJNews

Former Saturn franchise in Fishers enters new orbit

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

At least one of the former Saturn dealerships in the Indianapolis area will be renamed All Things Automotive, a newly formed Indianapolis-based used car franchisor headed by former Crawfordsville new-car dealer Larry Cummings.

Lockhart Automotive Group, which owns Cadillac dealerships and once operated three Saturn stores in the area, sent postcards to Saturn of Fishers customers over the past week, informing them of the name change.  Lockhart continues to own and operate the Fishers dealership and is now an All Things Automotive franchisee.

Late last year, Lockhart closed Saturn of Indianapolis, along Pike Plaza Road on the northwest side.  Its Saturn stores in Fishers and Greenwood remained open, selling used cars and a dwindling inventory of new of new Saturn models.

General Motors recently killed Saturn and Hummer brands after negotiations to sell them to other manufacturers collapsed.

All Things Automotive touts  an industry-first partnership with Raleigh, N.C.-based Carquest Auto Parts to provide parts to All Things Automotive dealers for their service bays. Carquest has 24 stores in the Indianapolis area.

“We will be continuing the Saturn customer-focused process in both sales and service,”  Lockhart said in the notice to customers, adding that the dealership would continue to perform Saturn warranty work.

Lockhart principal Lynn Kimmel said the enhanced vehicle service component All Things will offer is particularly appealing. Carquest brings attractive parts pricing and additional resources for technicians that will allow the service end of the business to become competitive with other shops. That should make the Fishers location a destination for service in and of itself, she said.

“This has so much potential for us.”

 The branding for the used car end of the business is another plus “because Indianapolis is such a developed market and new car franchises are pretty much taken up.”

A national used car franchsor has lucrative potential, Kimmel noted, adding “it obviously is very successful for Carmax,” the nation’s largest used car chain.

Cummings announced the formation of All Things Automotive last month at the National Automobile Dealers Association convention in Orlando, aiming particularly at former Saturn dealers scrambling for a new format.

Cummings, in courting dealers, said labor rates will be competitive with most independent and aftermarket service centers, freed of the cost and time of warranty repairs on new cars that cause some dealers to increase hourly rates.

Cummings envisions partnerships with other branded aftermarket providers as well.  He told dealers the concept is structured to squeeze the most out of the modern Saturn facilities.

Also developing an All Things Automotive franchise, out of an empty Ford store, is Mark Thomas, who operates new car dealerships in Western Pennsylvania and in Maryland.

The All Things Automotive franchise incorporates modern, uniform signage aimed at conveying a national brand name image and infusing credibility to what could otherwise appear as just another used car lot.

According to literature, the franchise “will appeal to retailers and dealers who truly understand the customers for life concept and who wish to command a growing market through a truly competitive new way of serving the motoring public.”

Cummings owned his Oldsmobile-GMC dealership for 22 years, selling it in 1998. He’s former manager of the state’s Intelenet Commission.

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. If what you stated is true, then this article is entirely inaccurate. "State sells bonds" is same as "State borrows money". Supposedly the company will "pay for them". But since we are paying the company, we are still paying for this road with borrowed money, even though the state has $2 billion in the bank.

  2. Andrew hit the nail on the head. AMTRAK provides terrible service and that is why the state has found a contractor to improve the service. More trips, on-time performance, better times, cleanliness and adequate or better restrooms. WI-FI and food service will also be provided. Transit from outlying areas will also be provided. I wouldn't take it the way it is but with the above services and marketing of the service,ridership will improve and more folks will explore Indy and may even want to move here.

  3. They could take the property using eminent domain and save money by not paying the church or building a soccer field and a new driveway. Ctrwd has monthly meetings open to all customers of the district. The meetings are listed and if the customers really cared that much they would show. Ctrwd works hard in every way they can to make sure the customer is put first. Overflows damage the surrounding environment and cost a lot of money every year. There have been many upgrades done through the years to help not send flow to Carmel. Even with the upgrades ctrwd cannot always keep up. I understand how a storage tank could be an eye sore, but has anyone thought to look at other lift stations or storage tanks. Most lift stations are right in the middle of neighborhoods. Some close to schools and soccer fields, and some right in back yards, or at least next to a back yard. We all have to work together to come up with a proper solution. The proposed solution by ctrwd is the best one offered so far.

  4. Fox has comments from several people that seem to have some inside information. I would refer to their website. Changed my whole opionion of this story.

  5. This place is great! I'm piggy backing and saying the Cobb salad is great. But the ribs are awesome. $6.49 for ribs and 2 sides?! They're delicious. If you work downtown, head over there.

ADVERTISEMENT