Crowley to part with two Plainville auto dealerships

Published on Sunday, 14 October 2018 20:51
Written by BRIAN M. JOHNSON

@brianjohnsonBP

PLAINVILLE - Two of the Crowley Auto Group’s 13 dealerships are being sold to Gengras Motor Cars, which operates six dealerships in Connecticut and Massachusetts.

The sale of Crowley Ford and Crowley Volkswagen in Plainville will likely take about 60 days to obtain the manufacturers’ approval, and Crowley isn’t planning to hand them over until next year.

“Gengras had been after us for years,” Ken Crowley, owner of the Crowley Auto Group, said.

Crowley is not going out of business or selling out, Crowley said.

He said “the price was right” for those two locations. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“The businesses will continue just as they are now, with superior sales and service, through the transition,” said Crowley. “This is still the state’s number one Ford dealership.”

With electric and self-driving cars on the way, there are “a lot more issues to deal with” in running the franchises. Crowley said there have been struggles with the diesel issue surrounding Volkswagens. Thirty to 40 percent of Crowley’s Volkswagen sales were diesel and that “dried up,” he said

Crowley started with “one little Chrysler dealership on Broad Street” in Bristol. He now owns franchises in Bristol, Plainville and Hartford, and employs about 350 people.

Crowley has said that he has always been dedicated to customer service.

“As you know, I follow through with that and I ask that if someone is unhappy, I want to know about it,” said Crowley in an interview in May. “We’re not perfect, and once in a while we have an issue, but I do everything in my power to take care of it. I’m the only one of the auto dealer owners who makes that promise. Service is of prime importance to us.”

This dedication to customers has not gone unnoticed. Chrysler presented Crowley its Customer First Award for Excellence this year for the second straight year.

Crowley has said that he is able to offer his promise of satisfaction thanks to his staff and the customers who return to his business year after year.

“We try to make things easier for them,” he said.

Crowley Auto Group is also known for its support of the community. It backs the Bristol Technical Education Center whenever possible and regularly hires its graduates. Crowley also donated a dozen late-model engines with fuel injectors for students to work and train on this year.

Crowley also supports the Connecticut National Guard Foundation, collecting food, money and toys for the families of the troops. He said his auto group makes a special effort to hire veterans as much as possible.

Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or bjohnson@bristolpress.com.



Posted in New Britain Herald, Business, Plainville on Sunday, 14 October 2018 20:51. Updated: Sunday, 14 October 2018 20:54.