What is in this article?:
- Group of Lexus Dealers Out to Change a Thing or Two
- Q&A on How F&I Is Changing
Lexus Plus alters the traditional F&I operation that typically is a separate dealership department.
Rohrich dealership participating in pilot program.
The Rohrich Auto Group raised its hand when Lexus sought a few good dealers to participate in a customer-oriented pilot program called Lexus Plus.
“We were so ready for it,” Greg Grimes, the Pittsburgh-based group’s vice president-operations, tells WardsAuto.
Lexus Plus aims to enhance showroom hospitality and make the buying process smoother and faster by offering no-haggle pricing and a single point of contact.
“The sales consultant, who meets you at the door or takes your phone call or Internet lead, works with you from the start to the consummation of the deal,” says Grimes.
The idea of a single dealership staffer handling a car shopper from A to Z is not new. It has been a topic of industry discussion for decades. Previous automaker attempts to implement it at dealerships have fallen short.
But automakers and dealers work more closely today, and both groups generally recognize the utmost importance of happy customers in the modern marketplace.
Eleven dealers nationwide were picked to participate in the Lexus Plus pilot program, one of a growing number of automaker initiatives to make car buying easier and quicker.
Lexus Plus alters the traditional F&I operation that typically is a separate dealership department. Lexus Plus merges it into the overall sales process.
Rohrich Auto Group consists of two Lexus stores as well as sales points for, , Cadillac, Chevrolet, , Bentley and Maserati.
Founder Charlie Rohrich began as a dealer in 1938. His son Jim succeeded him, followed by his son David, the current dealer-principal.
The group became one of the nation’s original Lexus dealers in 1989. “We had a bigstore at the time, and David at the age of 28, after the passing of his father, had to decide whether to invest in Lexus,” Grimes says. “He chose to.”
Before joining the Rohrich group last year, Grimes worked as a regional sales manager for Toyota Financial Services, the captive finance unit for Toyota and its Lexus luxury brand.
He currently serves as a mentor for the second-annual “F&I Innovator of the Year Award,” an event put on by EFG Companies and Northwood University. The winning team will be selected next month.
He describes the mentorship as inspiring. “You can tell they take the program seriously,” he says of the students he is working with.