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‘Share the Love:’ How NADA 20 Group Helped This Subaru Dealership Save $4 Million



Abram Olmstead, Senior Director

Abram Olmstead

Senior Director, Digital Media

Heuberger Subaru in Colorado Springs, Colorado has been the leading seller of Subaru cars in the nation for 10 years running. So why did this successful dealership need the help of NADA’s 20 Group consulting services?

20 Groups are a group of 20 dealers of the same size and same brand but they don’t compete against each other, NADA 20 Group Consultant Tim Gavin explained. “So it might be a Toyota dealer in Oshkosh, a Toyota dealer in Miami, and a Toyota dealer in Philadelphia,” Gavin said. The group meets three-to-four times a year, and shares their financials—“everything from light bulbs to commissions,” which facilitates a discussion on how to improve their numbers. The goal of all 20 Group is to improve business performance and profitability through transparency and by sharing best practices.

“What I really like about the 20 Group is it holds us accountable to our peers,” said Heuberger Subaru General Manager John Adams. “No matter if you sell or service 10 cars, 1,000 cars or 10,000 cars a year, the problems are the same. Whatever problem we’re having, a dealer that sells maybe 10 cars a month could have the same problem. It’s nice to be able to tackle it from all the different sides and angles.”

A year and a half ago, Heuberger reached out to Gavin for in-depth, in-dealership consulting. “Most of my time is with 20 Groups, but we’re also called to go to individual dealerships to help them out. Just come in and give them a new set of eyes, look at the numbers and see how we can help them,” Gavin said.

At Heuberger Subaru, “we found a lot of processes that were out of sync, dated. We found a lot of expenses that were out of control,” Gavin said. In fact, with Gavin’s help, Heuberger Subaru was able to cut expenses by $4 million.

“To me that’s incredible,” Adams said. “It’s nice to see that you’ve cut expenses by 30 percent. You see that you’ve increased new car profit $100 per vehicle. You see that you’re RO (repair order) time has increased by 10,000 over a year. Just being able to look back at your history and seeing the successes you’ve had—and the failures—because we have to learn from both.”

NADA 20 Group offers unrivaled expertise and resources. With an average of 25 years of automotive retail experience, NADA consultants have the resources of the association at their fingertips to help guide their groups on industry hot topics and issues. Additional advantages include:

  • Three meetings per year; format and schedule is dependent on group type.
  • Access to the industry-leading, OEM-specific online composite.
  • Expense and performance guidelines by franchise.
  • Ongoing support from your 20 Group peers and consultant between meetings.
  • Financial comparisons of your dealership against average and best-in-class dealers.
  • Access to a collection of 20 Group ideas and best practices.
  • Professional analysis of your financial performance.
  • Real-time comparisons of your performance against competitive marketplace through exclusive NADA 20 Group Live tool.

Contact us here to learn more.

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