Last week, we reported on a Kia dealership trending online that stocks all kinds of luxury, sports, and exotic cars alongside their normal inventory. Naturally, we were curious, so we went to check the dealership out in person, and the story as to why those cars are there was so much more than we could have ever expected.
Some of the highlights of Kia of Riverdale’s inventory include three Lamborghinis, four McLarens, four Porsches, five AMG’s, five BMW M Cars, seven Audi RS cars, two Nissan GT-Rs, and a Tesla Model S Plaid. If luxury’s more your thing, they also have two Bentleys, a Maybach, four S-Classes, and a G-Wagen. The Kia dealership’s most expensive car, a Lamborghini Aventador SV, is listed for a whopping $475,999.
How It All Started
We spoke with Jeremy Rochelle, the dealership’s owner, as to how all these cars came to be here, and the answer was actually quite interesting. As it turns out, his dealings in exotic cars started around 15 years ago as an independent business, and it wasn’t until only a few years ago that he and his two partners decided to start selling them out of real dealerships.
Rochelle chose Kia for his dealership because he personally likes where the brand is headed (and we’d be inclined to agree), while his partners chose others like Nissan, Infiniti, Mitsubishi, and Volkswagen. He said that while the exotic car business was already in place and planned when he bought the dealership, the scale to which it’s grown was totally unexpected, and attributes the success to a combination of smart acquisitions, an ideal location, and the current state of the market.
It’s Simply Good Business
Rochelle and his two partners are set up in various locations across New Jersey, Florida, and Ohio, specifically so they can cover a wide range of demographics. All sales are data-driven from extensive research on market trends, and as a result, Rochelle says he would consider buying almost anything so long as he feels he can make a return on his investment.
To keep up with everything, Rochelle has a dedicated vehicle acquisition team at the dealership, and he and his partners are constantly swapping cars and data to maximize their success. And it seems to work, as sales for these high-end cars, at least at Kia of Riverdale, account for between 14 and 20 percent of their monthly turnover. On top of that, that figure only accounts for cars that sell for $100,000+, which means it’s likely even higher when you factor in cars like the AMG’s, M’s, and RS’s, which are under $100,000, but obviously don’t qualify as “normal” by any stretch of the imagination.
Customers Value Low-Pressure Environment
So while on the surface it may appear that the cars are just there on some sort of consignment or are just being used to draw eyes to the dealership, they actually get sold as regular inventory, meaning that the experience of buying a McLaren from Kia of Riverdale is no different than if you were to buy a Sorento from them. Given that, you’d think this type of purchasing experience for these high-end cars would turn some people off, but Rochelle says it’s actually the opposite.
Many of the dealers where these cars are typically sold sometimes have a perceived stigma of ‘un-approachability’ surrounding them, so by selling them out of something like a Kia dealership, Rochelle aims to make the buying experience much more inviting. He says that many people who are in the market for these cars actually value the low-pressure environment created by his dealership, and most figure that if the majority of their vehicle’s servicing will take place at its respective brand’s dealership anyway, who cares where it’s purchased from?
Regarding any skepticism about the vehicles’ condition, each and every one of them must pass a full mechanical inspection from their respective manufacturer’s specialists before Rochelle and his team even consider selling them. That being said, not all jobs get outsourced to other dealerships, as probably one of the most surprising things about Kia of Riverdale is that they actually have a Lamborghini technician on site for certain repairs. A white Huracan was being worked on at the time of our visit, so we got to witness the rare sight of a Kia Telluride being serviced 10 feet away from a Lamborghini.
Has Anyone Traded In An Exotic For A Kia?
Nearing the end of the visit, there was still one more question on our minds that we felt had to be asked: Has anyone traded in a Kia for any of the exotics, or vice versa? According to Rochelle, the answer is no, at least not yet. In the end, the fascinating story behind this dealership went so much deeper than we could have ever expected, and we’d like to thank Jeremy Rochelle, James Morando, Henry Lopez, and the rest of Kia of Riverdale for taking their time to help us tell it.
Video and Photo credits Andrew Gutman for Carscoops.com