Real Stories From Life at a Dealership

People are the experience

Validation Thru Public Affirmation

Sierra Motors        “One Low Price, Plain and Simple…ALWAYS !”

 

 CALL TODAY  @800.571.0275 

 ericp

http://www.sierramotors.net/HomePage

Life throws you hardballs at a speed of which mere mortals cannot even swing at. God grants you opportunities through loss to walk toward his light in this unjust world.

I don’t have the knowledge of why this happens…I only have the feelings that have resulted. I have decided to share with the help of the written word my life’s experience.

This blog is the result of of over 30 years of moments locked in my head about my life in the automotive business. Sometimes these tidbits will leave a smile, sometimes will make you think, and sometimes will open up your memories of your own life.

The reason you get an emotional response to my stories is simple. I write the truth from my heart of the human experience and that connects us all together. By connecting with you I am connecting you with me. With connection comes the hope of understanding…and this I need.    

Along life’s path, some of us pick up some very special friends.  Barry Kluger is one of mine, for we have experienced the same type of loss. Barry Kluger is Managing Partner of Kluger Media Group and was Senior Vice President of VH1 and Viacom. A piece of advice from a friend like Barry is worth its weight in gold. Barry suggested that I submit some of my short stories to be published.  Amazingly enough this Sage was right! I am now published.

There is no more validation than the public affirmation of one’s faith. MY BLOG with the help of a jolly old elf, Jim Greenleaf, who begin in auto sales the same day I did, at my side. {and is this day is my Finance Manager right here at Sierra Motors in Jamestown, Ca.,}

In 1983 we started on a quest to conquer and take over the sales floor of our home town GM Dealership in Southern California, it was a time when the Industry was experiencing the biggest down fall in sales and production. As you might remember, here’s one of the best examples of the creative genius of GM; the Chevy “CITATION”, chevrolet-citation-2doesn’t that sound like your getting a ticket?

 

 

 Sorry …I digress.  Where was I… oh yeah … I’m now published and not only published but I’m the lead story in this number one insiders Automotive publications in the Country.

GetAttachment

 

 

Auto Dealership Monthly goes out to every auto dealership in the country. The asked for a humorous story, on page 5. Now is the validation or what?

 

 

 

 

 

A even bigger affirmation for me is when a friend, family member, a peer or even just a reader is so moved by a story to leave a comment. Wow! It makes it all so worth it.

Here now are some of those comments:

Patricia Mansel

Eric, Great story. Sorry I don’t remember the trip. You did a great job with it and we look forward to any more stories you want to share. Love, Aunt Patricia

  KANSAS TO CALIFORNIA
3 #
J & K

Eric, I can see how easy it would be to get hooked on hocky. I realy enjoyed the game we went to about three years ago. A good story. now lets go fishing. jp

J & K
1
AT THE STANLEY CUP
1 #
aunt bonita

enjoyed reliving our trip to ca. painted desert is still beautiful!!!! thank you, you did a great job.
love, auntie bon

aunt bonita
1
KANSAS TO CALIFORNIA
3 #
Kim Moser Johnson

Eric, what a beautiful story – I knew Mike from grade school, actually from church. Terrific family and great friend. Glad to hear he’s “down south” with me – I’ll try and look him up. Thank you for these stories, Goose! Much love to your family, Kim

Kim Moser Johnson
1
RUNNING, READING AND NEIGHBORS
4 #
J & K

Eric
Great story and we remember those days well, why do you think we moved? The wind is still there, so we hear. J&K

J & K
1
SEARS FOR ENTERTAINMENT
1 #
Brenda Robinson

Hello Eric,
That was quite an interesting story about our arrival into
the neighborhood. Yes one should not be judged by the color of one’s skin.
Mike, my cousin,lives in Temecula with his wife and 3 kids. He is a criminal defense lawyer for San Diego County.
Best wishes to you and your family,
Brenda

Brenda Robinson
1
RUNNING, READING AND NEIGHBORS
4 #
centerforrespitecare

Greg is pretty amazing. I wonder if he could get a break on being a bit late on Wednesdays from an understanding boss? And if not, maybe Greg’s calling is in the nonprofit sector, or somewhere other than where he is now

centerforrespitecare

http://centerforrespitecare.wordpress.com

1
LATE FOR WORK
2 #
J & K

We do need more souls out working like Greg and his familly so that others may have life. What a blessing to have worked with and known someone like Greg. J&K

J & K
1
LATE FOR WORK
2 #
J & K

Hi ya son, this turned out to be a story to remember and you did a great job telling it. Think of how many people came out to Calif. on Route 66. Anyway, keep up the great work, we are proud of you. Dad and Kay

J & K
1
KANSAS TO CALIFORNIA
3 #
ericprothro
sierramotors.net
efpro@msn.com
209.78.161.37

Thank you and yes I met Brenda in the sixties at Mikes home. Where is Mike?

ericprothro

http://www.sierramotors.net

1
RUNNING, READING AND NEIGHBORS
4 #
Dee Robinson

Bless your heart. That was an absolutely beautiful story, Eric. Thank you so much for sharing that. Much love, from my family to yours. P.S. You do know that Michael and Brenda are cousins, right? (small world)

Dee Robinson
1
RUNNING, READING AND NEIGHBORS
4 #
Anonymous

So Eric I remember a Trip we took in the Ranchero to a Beach Boys concert. You, Charlene Jordan, me and Don Boyer. I remember waking up in the back just in time to wake you up while driving off the side of the road. Crazy stuff. As I recall it was a long hot day at Angel’s Stadium. Fun times. Pa

1
PINSTRIPING
1 #
Anonymous

Yes those were the good old days!!!! Who knew we had espionage training while selling vehicles for a living.
Long live Linda .

Your friend,
Rick

1
THE GLASS IN THE OFFICE
1 #
Rick Abercrombie

Eric,

I forgot about Mike, that was great remembering him .

Your Bud,

Rick

Rick Abercrombie
1
INDEPENDENT LIVING
1 #
Carla Leopardo

GREAT story Eric! I think it may be a myth though! No teenager would do such a thing. Would they?

Carla Leopardo
1
REWARD FOR JULIE
1 #
Uncle Bill and Aunt Pat

Eric.

Jim and Betty were able to pull up web site,they really enjoyed the story…
Betty said it really touched Jim..

Keep up the good work..

P.S. We’re leaving for Reno Tuesday..

Uncle Bill and Aunt Pat.
1
Chicken Kid
1 #
Pamela Watson Gwin commented on your post
     
   

“Based on what I read you seem to be doing this in fine style. Keep up the good work. God is with you.”

 

 
Uncle Bill and Aunt Pat.

Eric I love this ..
Keep up the good “WORD’S ” and good Writting….

Love Aunt Pat.

P.S/ I will be checking in..

Uncle Bill and Aunt Pat.
1
The Legacy of Jack
1 #
Uncle Bill and Aunt Pat.

We both enjoyed your ride…
Our prayers our with you, and Mike..

With our love..

Aunt Pat.& Uncle Bill

Uncle Bill and Aunt Pat.
1
FIVE DEER TRAIL
1 #
ericprothro

Laugh, please laugh

 

Leah Alexander

Thanks, Eric. You’re da bomb!

 
Leah Alexander
 
HAPPY WE MOVED HERE
4 #
Carla Leopardo

Congratulations on your move Eric. It sounds like you have exactly the right frame of mind to stay in business and thrive, and in such an amazing place. I think you made the right move and I hope you will be happy there for a really long time! Cheers and good luck! Carla Leopardo

 
Carla Leopardo
HAPPY WE MOVED HERE
4 #

   
Here also are some comments from my peeps on Facebook    http://www.facebook.com/home.php  

Craig P. Earl sent you a message on Facebook…

That will be interesting. It will be fun to hear what you have to say.
I had asked my question about the articles because they are all very professionally done, and I was thinking that maybe you were grabbing them from some publications. It’s obvious that you’ve developed a talent that I was unaware of. Keep up the good work.

Pamela made a comment about your link:

“You are a good friend Eric Prothro.”

Alene Cates sent you a message on Facebook…‏

“Debbie read me the story on the dealership, we tryed to figure out who it was, think we did.”

DeeDee Hanson made a comment about your link…‏

“Love that! I learned how to drive in that parking lot…”

Cynthia Shook-Hart made a comment about your link…‏

“I loved this one. Actually made me miss “home”. Yep, silly me, still missing Lancaster.”

Wayne Evan Foss made a comment about your link…

“Eric, the greasy guy with no shirt, he’s still here, in fact, I think he cloned himself many times.”

RE: ZR-1

That is a very cool and memorable sale!!!  You have quite a few great ones that I have heard…    Not to brag, but my two most memorable car sales day includes a 5-1/2 car sale sunday(non-tent sale, 2 appt’s, 1-2 car fresh up sale) and a two new corvette(nassau blue & silver) sale thursday at $18k over MSRP…  We were only paid 20% at that time w/%5 extra for over 12 cars in a month.  I don’t remember the exact voucher amount, the pack was only $2500 then, but the total voucher(s) was over $5k, I think Bill Penn was not happy…  Not long after and after leaving the floor a flat was paid for vette sales irrespective of profit(not good for motivation). 
Hope things are going well for you and yours, I still would like to visit in the not-so-distant future.  Really enjoy your writings and info, stay in touch…
Your Friend, Associate, & Biking partner Always,
Mitch

Michelle Prothro made a comment about your link on her Wall…‏

“Wow it is really cool to read about our family. I never really met any of my Papa Lloyds side of the family, I dont think anyways?well besides Corky and Jimmy. Have you written any others?”

Re: In the Forum‏

Excellent. Dave Atkins.

Pamela Watson Gwin made a comment about your link…‏

“Very thought provoking. Greg is a hero to so many. Thank you for sharing. Your reward will be in heaven Greg as well as on every face of the people you serve.”

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July 1, 2009 Posted by | automotive, barry kluger, blogs, chevy, eric prothro, friends, gm, sierra motors | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

THE BACK SEAT OF A CHEVETTE

Sierra Motors        “One Low Price, Plain and Simple…ALWAYS !”

 

 CALL TODAY  @800.571.0275 

 ericp

http://www.sierramotors.net/HomePage

THE BACK SEAT OF A CHEVETTE

 

I looked out my office window at Sierra Motors to spy a tow truck with a Chevy Chevette chained too its back. It seemed to be a rite of passage with all the changes coming to GM in the next couple of months this old dog just couldn’t take it anymore. It was at peace with the fact that all that rattling metal would probably make its way into about five new hybrids saving mankind from global warming. (LOL)

 

 

When I started selling cars, in 1983, we had real jewels like the Chevrolet Citation, Celebrity and Chevette. Believe me when I say that GM was already lost in the 1980’s. The best new car models they could produce would be the Lumina, Corsica and Beretta.

 chevrolet-chevette-7

The test drive in a Chevette was an experience. You had to be a contortionist because the driver’s seat did not sit square. It wasn’t exactly facing the front. The steering wheel came at you from an angle and it was off center. So much so that your right hand would be about two inches closer to your body than your left. For the driver it all came together with the hump in the floor from the transmission, remember the Chevette was still rear wheel drive. So all of the pedals were offset to the left. So your driving position was crooked, with your upper torso twisted to the right and your legs twisted to the left and your arms at two different lengths, in other words, a chiropractors dream.

 

I looked out and saw a nice couple looking at one of the last new Chevettes. After a short presentation and very little investigation we went for a test drive. I’m in the back seat, the Chevette routine starts. I place my left foot on a rattle. I place my right hand on a wind noise. Something else is making noise so I put my right foot on it and finally my left hand is keeping the rear window from whistling. All I can think about is how bad this test drive is going.

 

We pull back into the dealership I start to apologize…but I don’t. I follow my training and in an upbeat tone I ask “well how did you like it?” To my amazement they started saying things like, “nice ride” and “good acceleration” and “nice and quiet”. Standing in disbelief all I could do was ask, “What did you drive here in?”

 

They pointed to a 1963 VW bug. 1963-VW-Bug-Drivers-FrontIt was one of the old 32 horsepower, air-cooled engines. It had a rear quarter window missing. They then went on to describe how in there 15 years of marriage, that they had always aspired to get their first new car and this was it. To be able to finally afford a car with a new car warranty (12 months, 12,000 miles back then) was the fulfillment of years of working and saving together.

 

I realized then and there that my paradigms were of no importance. If I was going to be a success in this business I had better learn from the potential customer early and ‘LISTEN’  to what their values and needs were. To find a customers needs and wants could only be done by taking the time to actually listen to them, before trying to sell anything.

 

A lesson that I learned in the back seat of a Chevette…. and that’s the only thing you could do in the backseat of a Chevette.

 

EP 

 

May 31, 2009 Posted by | best price, celebrity, chevette, chevy citation, gm, lumina, sierra motors | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

HAPPY WE MOVED HERE

Sierra Motors        “One Low Price, Plain and Simple…ALWAYS !”

 

 CALL TODAY  @800.571.0275 

 ericp

http://www.sierramotors.net/HomePage

HAPPY WE MOVED HERE

 

With all of the commotion about dealerships closing, you might be amazed that as General Manager of Sierra Motors, I am happy to be here.

 

When John called and asked me to come to Jamestown California from Boise Idaho, I had no idea what to expect. John explained things to me in a very direct manner. Sierra Motors is very important to the community. We are a very large employer. We generate tax dollars for the local community. We take care of people the way a business is supposed to care of them, like they are all friends of the owner. We offer the fairest way possible to do business, one low price, plain & simple…always. For being one of the biggest career moves of our lives, it was a quick & easy decision. Let’s roll.

 

One of the keys to the continued viability of Sierra Motors is very simply CSI, Customer Satisfaction Index. Out of a possible 4.00 our 12 month score is 3.96. That puts us among the very top of the top in the entire western third of the United States. Rarified air indeed.

That speaks volumes about our departments. In sales, service, parts or body shop, we are committed to your satisfaction.

 

We have lived in places like the Mojave Desert and Boise, never in an actual forest. Our amazing agent, Michelle A’dair found us the ideal place to live, Comstock Ranch in the hills above Sonora. We are on just less than three acres of solid Oak, Cedar and Pine trees, at an altitude of 3600’. I am not sure of all of the varieties of animals that walk through our place, more Deer than we can count and a variety of singing birds to name a few. Our dog even found a skunk nearby.

 

We know how important communication is so we have created the first social network for this area. You can make your own web page, write about your event, down load pictures, videos, and stories @ GOLD OF THE MOTHER LODE and it’s free.

 

It is a peaceful, serene home with just enough snow in the winter and all of the wonderful fresh air of the forest the rest of the time. Friends and family can’t get enough of it when they come to visit. I have regular fishing buddies that have taken me to some fun and productive places. What a beautiful place to hike through. We already have a favorite place to eat, Koto’s Japanese in downtown Sonora. Ogowa is the real deal, a traditional Sushi chef.

 

So, Sierra Motors is here to stay. We will continue to offer value, great prices and friendly service. If you have any questions or need assistance contact me directly. I am looking forward to getting to know more local people. I have met most of my neighbors and enjoy them. I have also met almost every business owner in Jamestown and am proud to be associated with them. See you soon.

EP

May 17, 2009 Posted by | dealerships, eric prothro, family, gm, jamestown, motherlode, sierra motors | , , , , , | 5 Comments

Way Cool Super Ultrabitchen 2010 Chevy Camaro

Sierra Motors        “One Low Price, Plain and Simple…ALWAYS !”

 

 CALL TODAY  @800.571.0275 

 ericp

http://www.sierramotors.net/HomePage

images

Ok. I am excited. It’s rare that a new model will really mean something to me. But this actually is way cool super ultrabitchen. The new 2010 Camaro, in a word, I love it. This is the one. This car is multi-generational. My father, son and I all want one. I have been waiting for something this great to come out of GM for a long time. Of course we only get one at a time, but that does not take away from the car.

2010_camaro_1

 You must see the 2010 Camaro. Look at it. Feel it. Smell it. If possible drive it. How great does it make you feel? If you are fortunate enough, buy it! It is all of that and a bag of chips.

 Now why did GM wait until pre-bankruptcy to get it right?

May 1, 2009 Posted by | 2010 camaro, cool, eric prothro, gm, jamestown, sierra motors | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Chevrolet and Cadillac will survive

Sierra Motors        “One Low Price, Plain and Simple…ALWAYS !”

 

 CALL TODAY  @800.571.0275 

 ericp

http://www.sierramotors.net/HomePage

As a person that has been at the dealership level with GM since 1983, I find it interesting to read their own description of themselves. More for what isn’t said than is:

 

General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), one of the world’s largest automakers, was founded in 1908, and today manufactures cars and trucks in 34 countries. With its global headquarters in Detroit, GM employs 243,000 people in every major region of the world, and sells and services vehicles in some 140 countries. In 2008, GM sold 8.35 million cars and trucks globally under the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, Hummer, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn, Vauxhall and Wuling. GM’s largest national market is the United States, followed by China, Brazil, the United Kingdom, Canada, Russia and Germany. GM’s OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services. More information on GM can be found at www.gm.com.

 

Believe me when I say that GM was already lost by the mid 1980’s. Does anybody remember the great new models from Chevrolet? How about the Lumina, Corsica & Beretta? The Geo line featuring the Metro became the butt of low end car jokes. So what did Gm do? Advertise more and more.  Then they started down the path to doom, rebates and interest rate incentives. All the while dealership’s were asking for one simple thing; just build a good car.

 

The funniest thing of all, or tragic, or sublime is that GM and Ford for that matter, are finally building the best products that have ever been produced. But no one cares. Buy American, a great notion. Buy the best available? Even better. Too many people are confused by the social axiom that says they don’t build cars that people want. Wake up that was 20 years ago, imbecile.

 

I know that Chevrolet and Cadillac will survive. The rest is still conjecture. I also know that I will get up tomorrow and go to work at a dealership as I have for the last 26 years. I will still have a smile on my face. I will still by proud of my chosen profession. We will do the impossible a daily basis. This is after all an art form that few can master.

Eric Prothro

800.571.0271

April 28, 2009 Posted by | buick, cadillac, car jokes, Chevrolet, detroit, ford, gm, hummer, imbecile., sierra motors | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sierra Motors Radio Spots

Sierra Motors        “One Low Price, Plain and Simple…ALWAYS !”

 

 CALL TODAY  @800.571.0275 

 ericp

EP SIERRA MOTORS JAMESTOWN CA-  Here are 2 :30 spots currently playing on the local radio stations around the Mother Lode.

SIERRA Motors Are Yor Tires Tired? radio :30

 Are your tires tired?

 Cause Tires get tired?

Wouldn’t you get tired if you were on the road all day?

Why I’m getting tired JUST thinking about it.

Sierra Motors sells tires for less that never get tired.

ALL OUR TIRES ARE FILLED WITH NITROGEN THAT’S LIKE ADILALYN. AND THEY COME WITH SIERRA MOTOR’S FREE TIRELESS TIRE PROTEACTION PLAN, THAT’S RIGHT 24/7 WE DON’T GET TIRED WORKING FOR YOU.

THERE’S ONLY ONE WAY TO KEEP YOUR TIRES TIRE LESS AND THAT’S  BOY’S AT  SIERRA MOTORS HOME OF THE TIRE LESS TIRE. 984.5272 OR TOLL FREE @800.571.0271.

 

SIERRA Motors Body Shop radio :30

 

Whether it’s the first scratch, or, your last fender bender {we hear car crash} Sierra Motors Body Shop will turn your jalopy back into a jewel.

 Our color match specialist, our environmentally safe spray booth and our lifetime warranty adds up to your complete satisfaction.

 Remember for repaint, replacement, restoration or just plain repair; bring your ride to the guys at Sierra Motors call now 984-5272 or toll free @800.571.0271

 

 

April 25, 2009 Posted by | auto, best price, body shop, chevy, gm, gmc, jamestown, motherlode, sierra motors, tires, trucks | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment