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Discussion Starter #21
Here is an update on the Fort Worth area Alfa Romeo dealership structure. As previously reported the location on the eastside of town was sold by Ewing to a fellow in the used car business in Carrollton.

Last month the westside dealership was sold by Ewing to a group of four brothers and one of their friends. The Hamud brothers used to work at Mac Churchill Acura. The managers I talked to say they did quite well there. If so, it would be a miracle as that Acura dealership is in the worst location I have ever seen. It is one of those that is really easy to see, but impossible to get to. Even worse the highway department is in the middle of a multiyear project to rebuild the freeway interchange they are beside. I think the only way to get there is by helicopter.

The westside dealership if definitely Fiat oriented. They see Fiats as the way to make money, with the Alfa Romeo cars as extras.

This purchase, and then quick sale of both local Alfa Romeo dealers is worrisome. Clearly Ewing does not see much future in selling Fiats, Alfa Romeos, or Maseratis.

On the other hand the staff I met at both locations seem to be trying hard.
 

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I purchased my Quadrifoglio out of town due to availability but have taken it to Essence Maserati and Alfa Romeo for a couple of issues. In fact the car is there now. Kylee is service has been excellent at calling me with status updates and I am driving a Stelvio loaner. I have been pleased with their customer service.

Jeff
 

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The westside dealership (is) definitely Fiat oriented. They see Fiats as the way to make money, with the Alfa Romeo cars as extras.

This purchase, and then quick sale of both local Alfa Romeo dealers is worrisome. Clearly Ewing does not see much future in selling Fiats, Alfa Romeos, or Maseratis.

On the other hand the staff I met at both locations seem to be trying hard.
I agree on most of this, but the Alfa's are the way of the future for them, as they also intend to sell Maserati's. In fact, they are looking for a nice older Alfa for the showroom floor. The Fiats will always be there to drive sales and capture the initial entry market.

Their stock of Stelvios and Giulias is pretty good right now, and eh are willing to discount, something McKinney won't do without a competing offer.

I do wonder how long that small dealership building and service department will serve Alfa Romeo - Fiat of Fort Worth, especially if they start moving 500's.

As for Ewing, they haven't given up on Fiat. They took the east side Fiat franchise and moved it to their Arlington CJDR dealership.
 

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Discussion Starter #24
They told me that they would not be selling Maserati. If they do, I do not see enough sales for two locations.

I agree on the building. The exposure to the freeway traffic is only okay. Leaving the dealership and getting back on the freeway is a pain. If they do well, they will have to find a bigger building. Bryant Irvin is the best area right now.

I only talked to two of the managers. Has anyone met the owners of the two locations? What do you think of them?
 

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They told me that they would not be selling Maserati. If they do, I do not see enough sales for two locations.

I agree on the building. The exposure to the freeway traffic is only okay. Leaving the dealership and getting back on the freeway is a pain. If they do well, they will have to find a bigger building. Bryant Irvin is the best area right now.

I only talked to two of the managers. Has anyone met the owners of the two locations? What do you think of them?
Maserati, the sales are in the future, maybe they plan to wait for the move to Grapevine by the eastside guys? But they want to be a full line, so to speak. Given a standalone Maserati dealer already failed, teaming it with an Alfa/Fiat shop makes sense. It's the Grapevine Maserati/Alfa Romeo plan I'm not sure about.

The Alfa Romeo - Fiat of Fort Worth location is decent access from all directions and actually pretty decent access leaving too...but you have to know the trick! The trick is Expedition Drive, the street that is on the north side of the dealership. Exit the dealer onto this road, turning left and it curves north into White Settlement road. The a right at that point drops you at White Settlement and I-820, with an onramp in both directions and an easy transition to the I-30 E and W ramps.

Compared to MacChurchill Acura, it's a doddle. That place is stupid, like you said.

As for managers/owners. Paul is the manager at that dealership, and he came from MacChurchill with the new owners. He's working hard to get the processes straightened out right now, so there are hiccups. But, for the first time ever I got mailed a check from the dealership after the new accounting department came online (8/1/17)!

This is speculation, as I haven't had time to speak with them yet, but...A check dated 8/2817 was mailed to me for overcharge on TT&L. It seems like the Ewing Accounting Department was perhaps rounding numbers up and making extra charges, and when I bought, it was still their software being used. After the accounting transitioned (8/1/17), perhaps they checked all those sales versus their totals and found something squinky? Either way, that little check for $185 bought a whole lot more goodwill from a customer.

As for the owners. I've met three of the four brothers, and they struck me a real petrol heads. They seem to all be there most of the time, often behind the counter, helping customers who have no idea who they are. I had two of the brothers looking at inventories for a combination I wanted before I decided to take a unit off their lot. They seem genuine, and want happy customers, because those types come back and buy again. Heck, the first day I test drove a Giulia, one of the brothers was working me like a salesman, what can we do to get you into a Giulia today?

When I was back in for some RRT's, I saw the first Stelvios unloading. I mentioned it to the manager, who hadn't seen them yet, so he invited me back to look at them. On the way, he grabbed three of the brothers and a couple of their wives to look at them as well. You could tell by how they looked at the cars how much they love cars. It wasn't an open the doors and kick the tires look, it was a look behind the veneer for things that showed a well built car and stuff they could use to sell people on quality.

P.S. They were looking at a 1971 Spider for their showroom floor, so I told them if they bought one, I knew a guy who'd love to buy the fuel pump off them!
 

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Discussion Starter #26
Thanks for the detail. I have to have the Infortainment update done. I may just schedule it with them.

As to fuel pumps my plan was to write the definitive work on the subject. But it is going to take a bit more work than I thought. This is mostly due to the weirdos who sell Alfa Romeo parts. Being a nerd I feel free to make observations concerning nerds and their close cousins, engineers. As you may have noticed many nerds and engineers have what is best described as a flat affect. Alfa Romeo parts people appear to share this characteristic. You call them up, you say I want to give you some money for some of the useless, valueless junk you have laying around the place. Their response is basically I do not know if I can be bothered to gather up this junk and send it to you for money despite the fact that that is the business I am in. All of this delivered in a disinterested monotone. In short, I have never worked so hard and achieved so little toward my goal of cornering the market in non-running, trashed out, useless fuel pumps that no one else in the world has any interest in.
 

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Grapevine is just killing it for car dealers. The new hot spot in DFW: Mercedes, BMW, Jaguar, Land Rover, Porsche coming, Audi, Lexus, Infiniti, Cadillac

Jeff
 

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Discussion Starter #28
Grapevine is just killing it for car dealers. The new hot spot in DFW: Mercedes, BMW, Jaguar, Land Rover, Porsche coming, Audi, Lexus, Infiniti, Cadillac

Jeff
Yes. It is definitely the logical spot for any highend brand these days, but you need outlets in other areas as well. The wife and I buy MBs from the Park Place dealer in Grapevine, but usually go to the Fort Worth location for service due to the distance and thick traffic north of the airport.
 

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My observation is Service "opens" at 7, but the Techs aren't there till 8 and the Sales people at/after 9.

Talk to Luke about getting a reserved spot in line for the update, even if you arrive at 8, and I bet he can set you up.
 

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Yes. It is definitely the logical spot for any highend brand these days, but you need outlets in other areas as well. The wife and I buy MBs from the Park Place dealer in Grapevine, but usually go to the Fort Worth location for service due to the distance and thick traffic north of the airport.
Chipps, offer still stands on bringing a giulia loaner and picking your car up for the updates. (you don't have to show me a competitive offer for that).
 

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Chipps, offer still stands on bringing a giulia loaner and picking your car up for the updates. (you don't have to show me a competitive offer for that).
Hummmmm, it's good to be the king, eh, Mr. Chipps!
 

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Discussion Starter #33
I bought the car from him since the Fort Worth dealerships were in turmoil at the time. Then I pestered him constantly about where the car was, when it would arrive, how they were going to deliver it, if it would break daily, so on and so forth. Even though I paid MSRP, by the time the car arrived I am not sure he thought the profit was near enough. Then again, they promised reimbursement for the delivery fee of 300, but I have yet to see this. All in all Dane is good at whatever he does. Just be careful about test drives he arranges with the crazy Italian.
 

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I bought the car from him since the Fort Worth dealerships were in turmoil at the time. Then I pestered him constantly about where the car was, when it would arrive, how they were going to deliver it, if it would break daily, so on and so forth. Even though I paid MSRP, by the time the car arrived I am not sure he thought the profit was near enough. Then again, they promised reimbursement for the delivery fee of 300, but I have yet to see this. All in all Dane is good at whatever he does. Just be careful about test drives he arranges with the crazy Italian.
Good to know. I drove by McKinney in March to see a Giulia in person, but the dealership didn't impress me (no offense, Dane). It's also a much more complex and lengthy drive for me, so when I got the itch in July, the dealership sale worked out good for me. I also assume you went whole hog, which makes it easier to justify to the dealership management. I'm just a schlub in a base model.:wink2:
 

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Discussion Starter #35
Oh yeah, I bought the whole Ti hog, even the Lusso package. At MSRP it probably kept them open for months.

I told them they really, really need to move that dealership. I am assuming when it was built it had more space in front. But with yearly freeway widening projects going on, there is not much left. The next time they add a lane to that highway, it is going to have to go through their front door.
 

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I bought the car from him since the Fort Worth dealerships were in turmoil at the time. Then I pestered him constantly about where the car was, when it would arrive, how they were going to deliver it, if it would break daily, so on and so forth. Even though I paid MSRP, by the time the car arrived I am not sure he thought the profit was near enough. Then again, they promised reimbursement for the delivery fee of 300, but I have yet to see this. All in all Dane is good at whatever he does. Just be careful about test drives he arranges with the crazy Italian.
Haha it wasn't a bother, service was just a beast I wasn't prepared for in itself, so handling my order customers, along with that, was hectic. As far as the delivery fee, this is the first I've heard and itll be brought up Monday. I appreciate it sir and your tolerance of my qv customers right foot.
 

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Good to know. I drove by McKinney in March to see a Giulia in person, but the dealership didn't impress me (no offense, Dane). It's also a much more complex and lengthy drive for me, so when I got the itch in July, the dealership sale worked out good for me. I also assume you went whole hog, which makes it easier to justify to the dealership management. I'm just a schlub in a base model.:wink2:
Today I took a loan vehicle to a customer after service closed and ubered back. The car was towed in (dead battery for tbd reason) and had paper plates and a different dealer frame on the back. No offense taken, the appearance isn't what makes our store. We have clear, quick response protocols for any AR issue and every time Alfa care calls, the vehicle they are notifying inbound has already arrived and customer is in a loan vehicle or often times gone and resolved when they call for first status update. There are the established restaurants that you go to for the appearance and name, and there are the hole in the wall restaurants you go to because it's always a good experience.
 

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Hey guys. I thought I would update this thread with a recent service experience. We only have two dealerships in the DFW area that remain, Alfa Forth Worth and Essence Alfa Maserati. I reached out to Essence for my W05 update, the infotainment screen cracking and my drivers side door gasket falling apart on my 2017 Giulia. They set everything up quickly and offered to come pick up my car here in Dallas at my home in the AM. They completed everything under warranty with no hassle by the end of the afternoon and returned my car to my home the following morning. I was kept informed throughout the process. Flawless service experience. Couldn't be happier with them.
 

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I'm in Arlington and have been to Essance a few times to look at cars.
Always have been impressed with their informed but not pushy approach.
Just bought a Giulia Quad.
They will be my go-to.
May have a magnaflow X pipe installed elsewhere.
 

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Yea, Essence is pretty decent, but the staff keeps turning over, much like Alfa of FW. As for current issues:

-Both dealerships have only 5 or 6 loaners, so anything not scheduled well in advance and you’re likely out of luck. Apparently Alfa made them drop a bunch of loaners last month and getting new ones is slow.
-Alfa of FW seems to be returning to the staff turnover and poor communication that occurred in 2018. I’ve spent several weeks trying to get an answer on a problem that may or may not be related to the needed Infotainment update. They never got me an answer and could never get me scheduled.
- Essence’s plans in Grapevine fell through because the land in question was insufficient for the necessary facilities due to zoning limits. They are looking for a new location in there now.
-Essence’s parts department is the one used by the repair shops fixing Alfa in the area.
-Essence’s entry off the Service Road of 820 is still capable of bottoming a Giulia bumper, so I recommend entering from the side road on the south side of the dealership.

I’ll be honest, if it wasn’t for the terrible trade in value of my Giulia, it would be gone. I love it, but 5 year old maps, flaky Infotainment that randomly won’t start, and crappy support from FCA has worn me down. As it is, I’m nearly in a decent place to trade it in, and will likely do so before the warranty runs out. It will make me sad, but also lift the burden of FCA mismanagement off my shoulders.
 
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