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Parts Pro

June 30, 2003
Filed under Uncategorized

NEW HAVEN POWERSPORTS
143 Whalley Ave.
New Haven, Conn. 06511-3220
203/562-3900
www.newhavenpowersports.com

THE STORE
A second-generation family-owned business, New Haven Powersports was opened in 1972. Sells Aprilia, Kawasaki, Suzuki, Tomos, Kymco, E-Ton and Bladez. Owned by David MacQuarrie. 11 employees. 5,000 sq. ft.

PARTS MANAGER
Brooks MacQuarrie. Previously worked as service manager, “so I pretty much know all of the parts numbers by heart,” he says.

THE JOB
MacQuarrie takes care of displays and merchandising, orders all the OEM and aftermarket parts and accessories, and is in charge of three employees.
“The reason I took over is because the guy we had before didn’t really know 100% of what he was doing — ordering too much, not returning things right away so you can’t return them, that sort of thing.”

PARTS DEPARTMENT/LAYOUT
Four employees, including MacQuarrie, who estimates NHP’s parts department accounts for about 40% of the dealerships income.

The parts counter is in the rear of the store, but MacQuarrie says parts and accessories take up “probably half of the store.” “We have probably 300 to 400 helmets in glass cases, exhaust pipes on the wall, apparel is showcased on stands, and boots are up, off of the floor,” he says. “We try to give the store a fresh look every other week, so when people come in, they don’t see the same thing in the same spot.”

PURCHASING PROCESS
MacQuarrie uses a Wallace computer system to manage his department, but says he prefers to do most of the work by hand. “I go in and do it manually because I don’t like automated systems,” he says.

“Some stuff is obviously stronger than others, so in the middle of winter, you obviously don’t want to keep getting the parts that you sell in the summer. For instance, we’ve had a pretty rainy season so far, so things really haven’t taken off yet. I’m just trying to keep stock at normal levels without overwhelming ourselves.”

DISTRIBUTORS
Deals with Parts Unlimited, Tucker Rocky, KK, and a number of other distributors. As far as distributor weak points, MacQuarrie says, “Certain things once in a while, but nothing major.”

MacQuarrie says he gets his “regular order” items from Suzuki’s Pennsylvania warehouse in two days, and says Kawasaki’s delivery time is about four or five days from Georgia.

As for the second-tier manufacturers, he says “they all have their problems.”

WHAT’S HOT
Sportbikes are moving fast at NHP, and MacQuarrie says flush-mount turn signals, high-mount exhausts, tank protectors and frame sliders are the hot products in that segment. “We do a lot of under-tails from Eurobikes and Euromotorcycleshop.com, and a lot of pipes from Hindle, Micron, Yoshimura and Akropovic,” he said. “Besides pipes, the tail kits are probably our second best sellers.” As for ATVs, MacQuarrie was in the process of placing accessories on a LTZ-400, and mentioned Suzuki’s wide array of OEM products: “They have trick graphic kits that we sell, so I’m putting those on, a seat cover and a set of nerf bars. For quads, nerf bars and skid plates are probably our best-sellers,” he said.

BIGGEST CHALLENGE
“Keeping the guys motivated and doing things correctly,” MacQuarrie said. “There are only three or four of us back here at a time, so things can get overwhelming in a hurry — especially on Friday and Saturday, when it seems like we’re not getting anything done. You need to get in a rhythm and remember to do things in a certain way.”

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