Alan Gamblin was named 2017/2018 President of the Washington State Auto Dealers Association (WSADA) at the organization’s annual convention last month. WASADA is an organization that develops and promotes legislation to help dealer franchises, eliminate regular increases in the cost of doing business in Washington, and trying to protect costs for consumers. They also support dealers in their commitment to operate their dealerships in a fair and honest manner. Gamblin Motors has been involved with WASADA for years.
“When I succeeded my father as the Chevrolet dealer in Enumclaw, he told me to get involved and support the Washington State Auto Dealers Association because they do so much for our business,” Alan said. “Over the years whenever I’ve been asked by the Association to help, I’ve remembered my father’s counsel and done it. As the new WSADA President, my goal is to help connect more dealers with their elected officials in Olympia, especially the many new legislators. It is important that local and state officials understand our business so they can make informed decisions when it comes to regulation and taxation that affect our customers, community, and business.”
One of WASADA’s purposes is to help our elected officials understand the role auto dealers play in their communities around the state. Founded in 1920, the Association’s 294 dealer members serve 70 cities and towns across Washington and are responsible for annual sales volume totaling $15 billion. Together, they employ over 21,000 people with a combined payroll of more than $1.08 billion. An average dealership creates 69 local jobs, each paying on average over $54,000 per year plus benefits. Their dealership sales total 14.2% of the state’s retail sales, generating hundreds of millions of dollars of tax revenue for state and local governments through sales, corporate, and payroll tax revenue.
“It is also important to help the new generation coming into our industry,” he continued. “My father, like many former dealers before me, served in World War II when cars and business were not as complex. I’ve watched the automobile industry dramatically change over the last four decades, and it’s important to help the rising generation continue to be successful.”
It’s not every day you get to drive a million dollar car; let alone six of them. That was my experience yesterday in the desert of Nevada. Chevrolet invited their dealers to a race track in Spring Mountain, Nevada to drive prototypes of the redesigned 2016 Camaro, Malibu, Spark and Colorado Duramax Diesel. Earlier I had the opportunity to drive the new 2016 Volt at a facility in Las Vegas. As these vehicles are pre-production cars, each car cost one million dollars or more to build. I can only say it was six million dollars of awesome. Let me share some thoughts on each vehicle.
2016 Chevrolet Camaro
Every year my new year’s resolution is to shed some pounds and become more athletic. While I never seem to accomplish this
goal, the engineers for the new Camaro did just that. The car is lighter, quicker and more agile. I drove a 455 horsepower Camaro SS while following a race instructor around a road track. The beauty of a track is you can do things with a car you would never do at home. I admit I didn’t exactly follow the rules as I let the instructor get way ahead of me. This allowed me to open up the car full throttle so I could catch up. However, playing catch up didn’t prepare me for the hairpin turn at the end of the straight away. Yes, I scared myself and the Chevy employee next to me. I really thought I was going to be the only guy to spin out and go off roading in the desert with a million dollar car. To my amazement the SS stayed glued to the track. As I steered out of the turn I was saying to myself, “thank you God”; but it felt like the Camaro was calling me a whimp. I attest this car not only goes fast but handles amazing. Even by shedding almost 300 pounds, the new Camaro is stronger or stiffer meaning it hugs the road better. I didn’t feel any body roll in any of the turns.
From pictures the Camaro seems not to have changed much in design. In person you see the distinct Camaro look but also realize this is a completely different car. In fact only two parts were kept from the 2015 model; the Chevy logo on the back of the car and the SS badge. Everything else is brand new including the interior which is amazing. Lighter and more athletic will be my goal next year. Maybe I’ll achieve it by driving a 2016 Camaro.
Dinah Shore just about got my Dad (Art Gamblin) thrown in Jail. Well at least her theme song, “See The USA In Your Chevrolet,” did. For seven seasons Dinah belted that song out on TV. It was in the early 1960’s, my father Art Gamblin was a Chevy dealer in Bonners Ferry Idaho and every dealer received a horn for their demonstrator that played the notes to that song. We Gamblin kids took great glee in hearing it, but we had to be sneaky. The Police had taken exception to the noisy melody and had threatened to throw Dad in jail if they caught him playing that tune. So the Gamblin’s were stealthful about honking that horn… at least in Idaho.
Washington was a different story. In 1965 Art, Jack Parker, Bob Nelson and their wives traveled to Seattle to watch their beloved Idaho Vandals play the Washington Huskies in football. After a humiliating loss, they went to dinner at the Canlis restaurant overlooking Lake Union. After giving the valet the keys to his Impala demonstrator, Dad said with a wink, “what ever you do, don’t push the red button.” No sooner had they walked through the door than “See the USA” blared from the horn. The Valet figured out that tips were better if he shared the secret of the red horn button. The car never moved from in front of the restaurant and “see the USA in your Chevrolet” played all night.
In Idaho, the police finally won the car horn battle and Dad gave the beloved horn to his fellow Chevy dealer, Jack Parker who put it on his boat. The song lives on and was recently resurrected and performed by the cast of the TV show Glee. Below is the cast of Glee singing my favorite theme song. Remember, Dinah is still the only girl that can blow Chevy kisses.
Art Gamblin Motors a Chevrolet Dealer serving the greater Seattle area has been one given one of the first 2012 Chevrolet Volts in the area. In an agreement with Chevrolet; Gamblin has dedicated the first car for demonstrations purposes, giving people the opportunity to drive this new technology. So far the car has used $11.00 worth of gas in 552 miles or is getting 173 miles to the gallon. Alan Gamblin points out that it would be getting better mileage if they hadn’t forgotten to plug it in two nights.
As one of the first Seattle Chevrolet Dealers to get the Volt we are excited to have anyone come take this vehicle for a spin.
The Chevrolet Volt uses electricity to move the wheels at all times and speeds. For trips around 38 miles, the Volt is powered only by electricity stored in its 16-KWh, lithium-ion battery. When the battery’s energy is depleted, a gasoline engine seamlessly powers the generator providing electricity to power the Volt’s electric drive. This extends the range of the Volt for an additional 300+ miles without stopping until the battery can be re-charged. Unlike the competition, the Volt eliminates “range anxiety,” giving the confidence and peace of mind that the driver won’t be stranded by a depleted battery. Because of the backup gasoline engine, Volt may be taken across country on vacation.
Volt can be plugged either into a standard household 110v outlet or use 240v for charging. The vehicle’s intelligent charging technology enables the Volt’s battery to recharge in eight hours using a standard house hold outlet. A full charge costs about $1.00 per day in electricity and will consume less electric energy than the average home’s refrigerator and freezer unit.
Gamblin’s agreement is to have a Volt on hand to drive for the next six months. So please come and drive this car.
Gamblin reports that this new look aligns with Chevrolet dealerships across the country. It promotes a new clean brand image by incorporating aluminum composite materials on the outside of the building with consistent colors and finishes on the inside of the building.
The owner, Alan Gamblin says, “This undertaking is a big investment, but Chevrolet has a bonus program to reimburse our dealership. With our Chevy sales up 66% this year we anticipate a full return on our investment over the next four years of the program. Most people don’t realize that we built this building almost 25 years ago. Because a lot of thought and planning took place 25 years ago when we built the building, we will be able to continuing to service and sell vehicles during the remodel without any inconvenience to our customers.”
Construction for the update starts the week of October 17th and will take four months to complete. The contract was awarded to a commercial contractor, Donovan Brothers of Auburn. Art Gamblin Motors expressed their thanks to the City of Enumclaw for being so helpful with this project.
A little competition never hurt anyone. For the month of July the newly appointed manager John Vanwieringen at the Truck Center challenged Tom Rebek manager of the Main Store to a friendly wager.
Whoever sold the most cars between the two locations would eat a steak dinner while the other ate beans. A bet was set and as July came to a close the thought of steak was on the minds for many of the sales people.
Alan Gamblin has been around cars his whole life. He rarely gets really excited about a new car that comes out. He is pretty tight lipped when it comes to new products but when Chevrolet gave a special Chevrolet Volt to Art Gamblin Motors for Creation Fest 2011 and the Enumclaw Street Fair Alan was beyond excited. The car blew him away and that is all he could talk about for a week. Alan Gamblin was the only person that could drive the car from the Enumclaw Expo Center back to the dealership at night to charge up the Volt. While the Volt was with Art Gamblin Motors it consumed 0 gallons of gasoline and ran the whole time on electricity. The Chevrolet Volt is the 2011 North American Car of the Year and if it blew Alan Gamblin away it definitely will blow you away.
Not only did Chevrolet send a Volt up from California it also sent out a product specialist from Michigan to talk with guests at Creation Fest and the Enumclaw Street Fair. The Volt is an extended range electric car that can run up to 40 miles on pure electricity and when the electricity runs out the gas engine kicks in. As Motortrend Magazine said about the Volt, “The Future is Here and America is Back in the Game.”
After the event Art Gamblin Motors had to say goodbye to its Chevrolet Volt. Art Gamblin Motors will be getting its first retail Volt this fall. So stay tuned and check out our inventory on website www.gamblinmotors.com to see when the Volt will arrive.
If Alan Gamblin could go back in time and change professions many would pick him to be lawyer or a politician. After this past week at Creation Fest Northwest 2011 we all know what occupation change he would make. Alan Gamblin has a hidden ROCK STAR hidden behind that smile. With a T-Shirt Launcher in one hand and microphone in another everyone at Creation Fest knew who Alan Gamblin was. Either they screamed Chevrolet, T-shirt guy or Gamblin Motors… Alan work the crowd every night like a true Rock Star.
Art Gamblin Motors was once again excited to be a sponsor at Creation Fest 2011. The turn out was great and the weather was even better. Gamblin Motors donated special VIP vehicles for the staff and artists for Creation Fest. Alan Gamblin even negotiated with Chevrolet for a Chevrolet Volt to be at the event.
Saturday night was the big night as it was the closing night of the 4 day event. The band Skillet was on hand and Chevrolet Zone Manager Ron McCants was on there to launch-shirts off the stage!
Art Gamblin Motors at Creation Fest Northwest 2010
In 2010 Creation Fest Northwest moved from the Gorge Amphitheatre in Eastern Washington to Enumclaw Washington. When the city of Enumclaw agreed to host the Christian Rock Festival many residents did not know what to expect. Promoters of the event anticipated about 20,000 visitors a day. When such high numbers were released as the amount of traffic expected most people in town did not believe there would be a turn out of that magnitude.
Once Alan Gamblin found out about the event coming to Enumclaw he called some of the organizers and asked what he could do to help with their first attempt of hosting the concert in Enumclaw. A great relationship was formed between the organizers and Art Gamblin Motors. Art Gamblin Motors provided the staff and crew with vehicles. When Alan was approached last year to go on stage and give a 1 minute blurb about Art Gamblin Motors and his community he was a little hesitant but soon a ROCK STAR WAS BORN.
Since 2010 Alan has been waiting to go back on Stage and promote Art Gamblin Motors, Chevrolet and Enumclaw. So in anticipation for Creation Fest 2011 Alan went out and custom made Chevrolet Creation Fest 2011 t-shirts and bought a t-shirt launcher. Yes the Gamblin Man himself went out and bought himself a t-shirt launcher. We now refer to Alan as the “Cannon Master” watch the video and you will know why.
Art Gamblin Motors was chosen by Chevrolet and Buick to pilot a test marketing program, in order to see the program’s viability before being launched across the nation.
The Chevrolet’s insurance initiative program targets the second largest expenditure for an automobile: insurance. From July 6, 2011 through September 6, 2011, anyone living in Washington or Oregon purchasing a new Chevrolet or Buick from Gamblin will receive one year’s worth of automobile insurance through MetLife Auto & Home. General Motors is paying for this coverage regardless of driving record. The customer’s only requirement is to have a valid driver’s license. Alan Gamblin said, “this is an unbelievable value for all our customers. It can save families, like my own, over $2,000. We are glad that we have been chosen to participate in this program.”
So far the response has been overwhelming. It does not cost Art Gamblin Motors or the customer anything. In fact, customers who have insurance don’t have to participate, but many are adding the policy as a back up to their present coverage. The MetLife Auto policy received isn’t a cut rate policy, but it has coverage’s that every lender in the State of Washington require when financing a new vehicle. Already our sales are increased significantly because of this test program. We expect it to even get better as word gets out.
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