November 2, 2021 – LaFontaine Automotive Group, the fastest-growing dealer group in Michigan, today announced it has acquired St. Clair Chevrolet Buick GMC in St. Clair, Michigan. This is the fifth Buick GMC, and second Chevrolet dealership as part of LaFontaine Automotive Group and is the fifth dealership acquisition of this year. The Group recently acquired Thayer Automotive Group (3 dealerships) in Livonia and Superior Buick GMC in Dearborn.
“St. Clair is our first dealership on Michigan’s eastside and with its close proximity to I-94, the major artery for that area, we’ll be able to deliver our Family Deal advantage, which includes sales and service pickup and delivery to the surrounding Blue Water communities,” said Ryan LaFontaine, CEO, LaFontaine Automotive Group. “There’s been a tremendous boom in the St. Clair and surrounding communities – with hospitals, businesses and new residential developments being built as we speak.”
LaFontaine Automotive Group has been on an aggressive acquisition path, adding 16 retail locations in the past five years, all in Michigan. “As we continue to expand, we don’t do it for it for today, we do it for the future, and to be able to better serve our customers and to provide career growth for our employees,” added Ryan LaFontaine.
Founded in 1980 by Michael Sr. and Maureen LaFontaine, the nationally-recognized LaFontaine Automotive Group now includes 51 retail franchises, 10 collision centers and 29 Michigan retail locations. The Group employs nearly 1,900 individuals. It’s the ongoing mission of the LaFontaine family and passionate team members to personalize the automotive experience by building lifelong relationships that connect families and strengthen communities. The Group sold 36,277 vehicles in 2020 and is ranked as the 43rd largest dealer group based in the U.S. by Automotive News.
“We have already begun identifying partners, that together, will uplift the community and create initiatives that will connect families and strengthen communities,” said Kelley LaFontaine, VP, LaFontaine Automotive Group. “As a family-owned and operated business, we know our continued success and growth is more than just selling and servicing cars, it’s about giving back in our local communities and never losing focus that our employees are our greatest asset.”
LaFontaine will utilize the playbook that took its LaFontaine Cadillac Buick GMC dealership to be one of the top General Motor’s dealers in the nation, winning the coveted GM Dealer of the Year award for nearly a decade and being named the #1 Buick dealer in the nation back-to-back years (2019 and 2020).
Robert Simmons, Executive General Manager, GM Brands, for LaFontaine Automotive Group will oversee the new St. Clair location, in addition to his responsibilities over the other General Motors dealerships as part of the Group.
Michael Walls, General Sales Manager of LaFontaine Cadillac Buick GMC in Highland has been promoted to General Manager to oversee the day-to-day leadership of the new St. Clair dealership.
“I’ve been part of the LaFontaine family for nearly 20 years and I’ve poured my heart and passion into helping grow LaFontaine Cadillac Buick GMC in little Highland Michigan to be one of the top performing retailers in the nation. My time in Highland has been marked by both triumphs and challenges – and I will cherish all the friendships I’ve made along the way,” said Walls. “I look forward to bringing the customer and family-focused culture that has defined LaFontaine and our Highland location to St. Clair and am extremely optimistic for the future growth of this dealership.”
Following the closing, the dealership will be renamed LaFontaine Chevrolet Buick GMC of St. Clair. Kelley LaFontaine will be the dealer operator.
MEDIA NOTE: Financial details are not disclosed on transaction and no broker was used as part of the deal.