3701 East Valley Road
Renton, WA 98055-2301
Terry Stallcop, General Manager
Bob Lanphere, an auto dealer based in Oregon bought Renton Cycle in October of 2002, but general manager Terry Stallcop is in charge of the daily operation of the powersports and boat dealership, on-site restaurant and an indoor dirt track. The entire facility is roughly 140,000 square feet. About half makes up the powersports store. The rest is divided between boats, the restaurant and the track. Renton Motorcycles sells Honda, Yamaha Kawasaki, Suzuki, Polaris, Beta and Swift in its powersports lineup. Beta is an Italian trials and dirt bike, while Swift is a custom V-twin line. Cycles, ATV, PWC and snowmobiles are all available, along with Rinker, Baja, Glastron and Crestliner boats. Renton Cycle also carries toy hauler RVs and several brands of utility, snowmobile and watercraft trailers. The entire operation employs 110 full time employees with 75 working solely in the motorcycle store.
“Just the lack of riding areas in our state,” says Stallcop. “They keep closing riding areas and that is my biggest area of concern at this point in time.”
“Sportbikes. [Yamaha] R1s and R6s and [Suzuki] GSX-Rs,” says Stallcop.
CUSTOMER BUYING TRENDS
“It depends on the time of the year,” says Stallcop. “Certain times of the year dirt bikes and ATVs outsell street bikes. This time of the year [summer], we’re starting to get into more street bikes. The customers are all over the board, but they have all done their homework on the Internet before they come in.”
PARTS AND SERVICE
Stallcop says that parts and service make up about 20 percent of the overall business. There are 12 techs in the service department along with a service manager, assistant service manager and three service advisors. “We’re open 7 days a week here,” says Stallcop. “That’s just the way our company does business on both the motorcycle and the car side. We are open 362 days a year; we only close Christmas, New Years and Thanksgiving. Twenty employees handle the parts operation.
PROMOTIONAL HOME RUNS
“We are really diversified in our advertising,” says Stallcop. We do radio, some print, direct mail. We do our own 32 page full-color magazine a couple times a year. We have a huge inventory and we get a lot of repeat and referral business. Renton also sponsors its own race team with approximately 40 people on it. “We have an ATV race team, a motocross race team, an off-road race team and a road race team,” says Stallcop. “We have two people that work here, one is a senior sales guy the other is in parts that manage the race team. We give special discounts on bikes, parts and accessories and labor.” Finally Renton Motorcycles was the title sponsor of the Seattle Supercross last April, which Stallcop says, “worked extremely well for us.”
WORDS OF ADVICE
“I think the most important thing when you are dealing with customers is to follow through and do what you say you are going to do,” says Stallcop. “If you say you are going to call them back, call them back. If you don’t know the answer to something, say you don’t know. We preach that to our people all the time. If someone asks you how much a bike weighs and you don’t remember, don’t take a guess at it. Say ‘Let’s go find out.’ Be honest, be up front, treat customers like you like to be treated yourself and follow through we every commitment you make to every customer.”
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Copyright 2005 Powersports Business