CALEDONIA – The Two Row Times recently had the chance to chat with Kevin and Mark Searles of the family run Dennis Searles Chevrolet Dealership in Caledonia. A longstanding business within the community for almost 80 years, the location was originally established in the1940s. In 1974 Dennis Searles took over the franchise, and it has been a family run and operated business ever since.
There are 5 different stores operating within the Searles Chrysler dealership; new vehicles, used vehicles, parts, body shop and service departments. The renovations have given the business a fresh new look and have expanded different departments. Since the renovations, all departments remain onsite except for the body shop. It was decided that the body shop would be moved to a bigger location in Caledonia, allowing for larger machinery and higher capacity, which translates into better service for patrons.
Kevin Searles, a part of the business for over 25 years, handles advertizing for new vehicles. Kevin explains that General Motors corporate office actually called for the new renovations, stating they want each franchise to have a unified look. The entire building also has a fresh coat of paint, inside and outside. Kevin says he likes the new blue and silver colours much better than the old pink and beige. He also felt it important to note that their doors are now power operated, meaning the dealership is completely accessible to those in wheelchairs or with mobility challenges. Kevin says his favourite part of the job is “Meeting the people, dealing with the public and sharing exciting new products.” Kevin informed us that the Caledonia market is strong for SUVs and trucks, and that Searles deals exclusively with quality Chevrolet products.
Mark Searles handles the advertizing for the service department, dealing with warranties, labour and maintenance. Mark shared his joys about his work environment, sometimes having customers come in to say hi and socialize, while others to deal with vehicle breakdowns and repairs. “Everyday is a new challenge. You don’t know what to expect from one day to the next.”
This dealership is proud to offer financing as well as a ‘price-match’ guarantee, whether for a vehicle or something smaller, such as tires. If the product is offered for less elsewhere, Searles Chevrolet will match that price.
Different departments have their own operating hours. The Sales department is available Monday to Thursday from 8am to 8:30 pm, Friday from 8:30am to 6pm, and Saturday from 8am to 5pm. The Service department operates Monday to Friday from 7:30am to 5pm and Saturday from 7:30am until 12noon. The Parts departments can assist customers Monday to Friday from 8am to 5pm, and on Saturday from 8am until 12noon. For more information visit their website, www.searleschev.com, which is equipped with a ‘contact us’ option directly on the site. You can call the Sales department at (877) 342-5037 or the Service department at (877) 409-1165. The dealership is located at 160 Argyle Street South in Caledonia, so you can also just stop in and check things out for yourself. Status cards are welcome!