2021 and Beyond: The Auto Dealers’ Perspective by Robert Marlin

What is more exciting every fall than seeing what the new
model year has to offer car buyers? It’s even more exciting
this year because we are looking at 2021 and Beyond!


“Although, the trend toward customers using the convenience
of shopping online has been going on for several years, this
past year demonstrated how important the Internet is to our
customers,” Teeter says. “One of the biggest changes in our
business is our reliance on the Internet. We now have a fulltime staff dedicated to ensuring our IT capabilities are stateof-the-art. A vibrant and responsive website is a necessity in today’s environment, especially for a dealership such as ours
that is totally customer focused.”

The auto industry is embracing technology as never before, and
this is true at BMW as well. Features like rear-facing cameras,
once a luxury add-on, are now required standard features.
Safety has become the number one focus at BMW. Every new
model designed is evaluated first and foremost on how well the
occupants of the vehicle are protected.

This now extends to driver assistance systems that take over
control of the car in an emergency condition. Sensors recognize
a hazardous condition and will automatically apply brakes or
accelerate, as needed, to avoid a collision. When the driver is
changing lanes, sensors will warn of an approaching vehicle in
the driver’s blind spot. Using flashing symbols in the side mirror,
and even with steering wheel vibrations or steering impulses,
the driver is alerted of a vehicle that may be dangerously close
and only allows changing lanes as long as the sensors do not
detect a hazard. “At BMW of Tyler, we sell the finest luxury
vehicles available. However, we don’t consider safety a luxury,”
Teeter explains. “Safety is standard.”

Time has taught our business the need to constantly review
processes to make sure the customer’s experience, whether they
are in the store or in the comfort of their home or office is as
convenient as possible. At Classic Toyota and Mercedes-Benz
of Tyler, communication with the customer plays a very large
role in that. Offering customers the option to chat, text or talk
on the phone with a live person in our store, rather than a third
party, really makes a difference.

“Better than or above normal convenience for the customer
is our goal going forward,” says Reed. “Currently, we are
implementing a way for our customers to start and finish their
purchase process completely online, using dedicated personnel
to help every step of the way should they need assistance. It
will allow consumers to begin the process and have the option
to either partially or completely finish their transaction right
on our websites. We believe that by simply mirroring our instore processes digitally, our customers will see a huge benefit
in saving valuable time they would normally spend in the
dealership. This is a very new concept that includes home
delivery of your new or pre-owned selection.”

The ease and convenience of purchasing household items
through your preferred website and having them delivered to
your home, will now apply to acquiring a new or pre-owned
vehicle. Research, select your vehicle, approve the transaction
figures and await your vehicle arrival at your home or office at a
time that fits your schedule. “We are always striving to improve
for our customer’s convenience and an exceptional experience,”
says Reed.


“Genesis is about the complete experience. All our vehicles are
designed around our customers’ real needs and wants, while
respecting how they actually live. For two straight years, Genesis
has ranked first in the J.D. Power U.S. Initial Quality Study among
all auto brands. This shows just how committed we are to having
Genesis owners’ needs our top priority,” says Pate.

To ensure customer safety and comfort during these past few
months, Genesis of Longview instituted strict measures to be
observed by their employees, part of the Genesis Cares program.
This includes wearing fresh gloves anytime they are in contact with
a vehicle. To help people needing service on their vehicle to avoid
physical contact, Service Valet is a program implemented whereby
a technician picks up the vehicle from the customer’s home and
takes it to the dealership, leaving a courtesy replacement vehicle
for the customer’s use. When the service is completed, the vehicle
is returned with paper floor mats, plastic seat covers and a plastic
steering wheel cover to maintain sanitary conditions.

At Genesis, buying a car is considered a relationship, not merely
a transaction. The goal of the dealership is to develop a trusting
relationship with every car buyer. Through that trust, and the
quality product of the Genesis brand, the result will be a customer
who returns again and again. “We are proud to be the only Genesis
dealer between Dallas and Shreveport, offering luxury vehicles at
an affordable price.”


“To succeed in a competitive market, you must be able to provide
what the customer wants,” says Hall. “One of the things the
customer wants is a manufacturer that builds the cars they want.
We are fortunate to carry brands that are made by GM. GM pays
attention to customer demands!” This year, GMC launched an all
new completely redesigned Yukon full-size SUV, a new body style
on the full-size HD Sierra pickup, refreshed the midsize Canyon
pickup and midsize Acadia SUV, and introduced a completely new
model on the Buick side with Encore GX. It is the first SUV to come
with Alexa interface.

Perhaps the biggest change is in the Buick brand. Long associated
in the minds of consumers for its full-sized sedans, the Buick brand
is now officially a premium SUV brand, offering only SUVs versus
traditional cars. Those big sedans are no longer being built by
Buick. “That really speaks about where the auto industry is headed
in this country,” says Hall. “Compact and midsize SUVs are easily
the fastest growing segment of the auto industry in this country.”
GMC will offer a completely electric pickup next year with a
full-size electric SUV to follow. Plug-in electric vehicles are going
to be more common in the quest for this country to get off fossil
fuels, which is a far-away goal, as traditional fuels are cheap now
and that creates some headwinds to achieve the goal of introducing
more electric vehicles into the marketplace. “The future for Buick
and GMC is pretty bright because both brands are currently
offering vehicles that are in the sweet spot of current demand in
this country,” says Hall.


“I’d really like to start off by discussing our new Jeeps,” Wallace
begins. “From the Jeep Grand Wagoneer to the Jeep Wrangler,
there have never before been so many exciting changes in one year.”
Jeep Wrangler will have an electric version. Jeep Gladiator will
have an all new diesel model coming out this year. The Jeep Grand
Cherokee is fully redesigned for 2021, with an all new interior and
exterior. Plus, the standard Grand Cherokee will now be five inches
longer and have a ten-inch touch screen that can be swiped like
an iPhone. In addition, Jeep Grand Cherokee and Wagoneer will
be equipped with the exclusive Uconnect5 Platform. Uconnect is
the award-winning platform that is built into Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep
and Ram brand vehicles. It delivers available advanced connectivity,
entertainment, navigation, and communication features that are as
powerful as they are easy to use.

And the granddad of them all, the Jeep Grand Wagoneer, is the
longest Jeep Model ever made. Passengers will have their own
touchscreen with rumor of up to seven screens in the 2021 Jeep
Grand Wagoneer. Setting a new standard for luxury and elegance.

“When it comes to our Ram Tough Trucks, we are pleased that our
‘Come and Compare’ test has been very effective,” says Wallace.
Customers who have previously driven different makes of truck
are impressed with the Ram when they take the time to test drive
one. Ram converted many Ford and Chevy owners. New additions
for 2021 will include the “Heads up Display” now available to the
Laramie Model and up. Plus, “Trailer Reverse Steering Controls”
will now be available on all trim levels. Also, the Longhorn will
now be called the Limited Longhorn instead of Laramie Longhorn,
showcasing the luxury features. The Ram TRX Model stands in
a class of its own: 702 horsepower and comes standard with the
Hellcat engine; a twelve-inch touch screen; 35” tires; lift; plus, the
Ram TRX model is 8 inches wider than the standard Ram 1500. All
options are available at that trim level. No other truck on the market
boasts this much horsepower.

Next, we have Patterson Hyundai of Tyler. What can’t you say
about Hyundai? Nineteen different models, from the Accent to the
Veloster. But for 2021, the all-new redesigned Hyundai Elantra feels
fresh and modern. From its lower, wider profile to its crisp angled
lines, it isn’t just a matter of style. It is style that really matters. The
Palisade will be the one that really will steal the show for Hyundai in
2021. The Palisade gains a new top-of-the-line “Calligraphy” trim
level with premium exterior accents and lighting, upgraded interior
materials and accents, and standard HTRAC all-wheel drive.

Other changes include revised option packages plus standard LED
head lamps, HD Radio, and wireless smartphone connectivity for
Android Auto and Apple CarPlay on all models.
And last, but certainly not least, comes Patterson Volkswagen of
Tyler. Volkswagen is teasing us with the anticipated arrival of a
new compact SUV. The official reveal is scheduled for October 13,This new offering will slot under the Tiguan and is the second
proof point of Volkswagen’s doubling-up SUV strategy following
the launch of the Atlas Cross Sport earlier this year. Patterson is
very excited to share the first glimpse of the newest member of the
Volkswagen family.


“2021 brings some exciting new vehicles to the Chevrolet line-up
a totally new designed Tahoe and Suburban, a new midsize SUV
Trailblazer, and the first midsize engine for Chevy in the new
Corvette,” says Bates. He adds that Peltier Chevrolet continues to
strive during these trying times. Voted by Locals Love Us as the #1
new and used vehicle dealer in East Texas for ten years straight and
voted #1 by the Tyler Morning Telegraph Best in Town two years
in a row, during these unusual times the dealership continues to
offer a safe environment for its customers by using more online
engagement, at home deliveries, and being able to sell and service
customers directly from their homes. “Our customers have been
able to adapt and enjoy the new processes put in place,” Bates

Having a huge selection enables Peltier to gain market share and
fulfill their customers’ need for any vehicle, whether a car, truck or
SUV. Performance, safety, and technology come together perfectly
with the 2021 Chevy Tahoe SUV that boasts a stellar new interior to
keep your whole crew relaxed and entertained. A powerful 5.3-liter
V8 comes standard in 2021. Or, upgrade to the new Chevy Tahoe
High Country to gain a 420-horsepower 6.2-liter V-8 powertrain.
No matter which new Tahoe SUV you choose, the impressive
towing capacity means you’ll be able to haul all you need on your
next getaway. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity and
class-leading nine camera views enhance Tahoe for 2021, providing
peace of mind every time you are behind the wheel.


“The all new modern, stylish and rugged 2021 Nissan Rogue is
what we have been waiting for and is finally here,” reports Jeff Nash.
“Refined looks, both exterior and interior, will cause customers to
ask, ‘Do I need this vehicle or do I want this vehicle?’ We are here
to tell you the answer is, BOTH!” Another thing that makes this
Nissan a standout is that it is American made: built in America, by
Americans, for Americans!

Customers can enjoy the new body style while also enjoying the
new features such as, the standard nine-inch entertainment screen,
Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Even better, Nissan Rouge now
has the wireless Apple CarPlay option available. Feel confident
and safe getting to your destination with Nissan’s Dynamic Cruise
Control and Pro Pilot Assist with a heads-up display option
available. The Nissan 2021 Rogue, as the brochure says, “Intelligent
Mobility, Innovation that Excites.”

In addition to preparing for the new 2021 Rogue, customers will
also find bigger incentives and rebates in order to gain and keep
market share. On top of the 2021 Rogue coming this October,
Peltier is looking forward to the new Pathfinder coming out in May
2021; the new Frontier coming out in August 2021, and the new all
electric crossover Aryia coming out in September 2021. Nash says
that 2021 will be a BIG year for Nissan!


“2020 set forth a few challenges, creating many opportunities, for
the auto industry,” according to Jones. “However, I learned that the
more things change, the more they stay the same. Subaru clients are
still one of the most educated customer demographics; they know
what they want and have an expectation of what our process should
look like when they arrive.”

At Peltier Subaru, the primary focus is on how the customer
is treated and the level of knowledge expected from the sales
consultants. Because of this high standard, the Peltier Subaru
team is extremely knowledgeable, very personable, and always
customer focused. “Our customers can tell a difference, and they
love to come remind us how courteous, concerned, and kind our
sales consultants are to every person who walks through the door,
regardless of their purpose here,” says Jones. “The Subaru brand’s
sixty-seven-year legacy has been built primarily on safety and
reliability, something not changed for 2021!”

Eyesight Driver Assist Technology has been on Subaru vehicles
since model year 2013, making it the first, and longest running,
driver assist technology available. New for 2021, Eyesight will be
standard across the entire Subaru vehicle line-up. Other safety
features include pre-collision braking, lane departure prevention,
and adaptive cruise control to name a few. All 2021 Subaru SUVs will
also be on the Subaru Global Platform, a frame design increasing
structural rigidity by 70%-100%, lowers the center of gravity, and
reduces noise in the cabin to exceed best in class standards. One of
Subaru’s old slogans, “We built our reputation by building a better
car” is truer now than ever before.