Shelby’s Buckeye dealership adds Fiat – Mansfield News Journal
SHELBY – Even after 44 years, Steve Tetrick still likes selling cars.
And his dealership, Buckeye Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram Fiat, continues to grow.
It recently announced the addition of Fiat, making the Shelby business the only Fiat dealer within a 70-mile radius of the business, located at 278 Mansfield Ave. on the outskirts of the city.
Tetrick said with the addition of Fiats, the Shelby dealership added two salespeople and a couple more mechanics.
The new Fiats, built in Italy, cost roughly $17,000 to $18,000. Buckeye is also selling certified pre-owned Fiat vehicles.
There’s more good news. The dealership has just been recognized with the 2017 “Customer First Award for Excellence.”
Tetrick said his dealership is one of only 387 elite dealers from across the United States to claim this achievement.
To receive the award, the business had to meet several criteria, including facility certification, performance measures, training certification, employee surveys and process validation.
Tetrick has operated the Shelby business since 1998, first as general manager, and since 2006, as the owner.
A native of Hubbard, Ohio, he studied accounting at Youngstown State and Kent State before entering the car business.
He saw an advertisement in the newspaper for a salesman’s position in Ravenna and got the job.
“Little did I know the place was going out of business,” he said.
He started the job in the dead of winter and worked there roughly six months.
In that time, he still had mentors and learned how to sell cars.
A salesman never forgets his first sale.
In Tetrick’s case, it was a 1968 used Ford Torino, which he sold for $800 to the customer.
His first new car sale? A Plymouth Duster, which sold for $2,200.
He said selling cars today is like “night and day” from when he began.
“It’s totally different,” he said. “There’s not much negotiation anymore. You have to put your best price out there on the web, or you’re not going to get the lead. Fifty percent of our business is done on the internet.
“It’s easier today than it was in the past to sell a car because the internet has just changed everything. So much information is out there.
“In the old days, they kicked every tire in the place and now 75 percent of them know what they what when they come over.”
Before coming to Shelby, Tetrick worked for a couple other car places in Brownsville, Texas, and later in Huntsville, Alabama.
He even worked in Ann Arbor, Michigan, selling Chryslers.
A big Ohio State fan, Tetrick joked that the job was difficult being around Michigan fans.
He said the Chrysler business furnished cars for legendary University of Michigan football coach Bo Schembechler.
“We knew him and his wife and family, selling them Chryslers,” he said. They were a good family, he added.
With so much going on now, Tetrick said he has no plans to retire. At 68, he still likes what he does.
He and his wife Jennifer have a daughter, Macy, 16, who attends Lexington High School.