Charlotte Business Journal, by Jennifer Thomas
January 4, 2017
University Volvo will transform its dealership with a $2.5 million investment designed to improve the customer experience and drive sales.
The University-area dealership says its existing location at 7716 N. Tryon St. will become a Volvo Retail Experience facility — the first of its kind to be located in the Carolinas.
“You won’t recognize any part of the building. It’ll be completely different,” says Steve Magowan, president.
He’s operated that dealership for 30 years.
Plans call for a 4,000-square-foot expansion as well as an expanded display lot for vehicles. That brings the building up to 19,000 square feet.
Upgrades mean visitors will see a new customer service area that incorporates a Scandinavian-style design. It will offer a living room-type of waiting area with light-colored wood and glass. Technology upgrades will make it possible for software to talk to cars by reading the car’s database and write the repair order as the vehicle is driven into the service area.
Magowan anticipates the project will be completed by early fall. The dealership will sit on four acres when complete.
That investment also means that additional Volvo models will be available at the dealership. In turn, Magowan expects the upgrades to drive future growth.
“Car manufacturers today want really nice facilities,” Magowan says.
He expects to sell at least 500 cars annually by 2020 — up from 250 new vehicles this year.
“To do that we have to spend the money now,” he says. “I’m confident in what the franchise is going to do.”
Plans also call for more than a dozen new employees to be hired.
D3 Studio is the architect on the project, while C4 Builders is the general contractor. Capital Bank handled financing.