Motorcars Fort Worth shop foreman James Kuebler was taking a car for a test drive early one morning when he spotted a lady sitting in the middle of a bank parking lot, next door to the dealership, holding her ankle.
I walk that path all the time, said Rev. Wil Gafney, a professor at TCUs Brite Divinity School. I don’t know what happened. I just heard my ankle crack, and I went down. I couldn’t get up on my own.
James stopped and helped Dr. Gafney into the car and drove her home, where her personal assistant gathered the necessary papers and took her to the hospital.
I can’t thank James enough for stopping to help me, she said. Id always heard Park Place had great service. It’s true.
James has worked for Park Place for more than 35 years, starting in Oak Lawn in 1984. He went to work in Euless for a Mercedes-Benz store, then returned to Dallas before transferring to Motorcars Fort Worth in 2005.
But James is not the only good Samaritan in his family. James’ daughter, Rachel Kuebler, a booker with Porsche Dallas, just celebrated her five-year anniversary. Park Place recently received a gushing email from another grateful lady who had been helped by Rachel.
Last week Rachel from your Porsche store was my angel, said the thankful woman. I was stranded on the side of the road with a flat tire when she stopped to help. She insisted on changing my tire, then offered to follow me to the tire shop down the road so I could get the tire replaced. I was floored. If this is the kind of help you give to people who aren’t your customers, I can only imagine the top-notch service your regulars receive. I don’t know if a luxury vehicle will ever be in my family’s budget, but the next time I need a car I will absolutely be checking out your used cars. Park Place and Rachel, you are doing it right.
When the email reached Tony Carimi, he replied, It’s a great nod to James leadership, both in his professional role and with his family. The stories show how his great example at work and home contributes to the goodwill running in the family. This perfectly exemplifies the Park Place spirit of serving!
The online car buying process has been evolving over the last decade and Park Place Dealerships has rolled out Clicklane, a seamless online experience that has simplified the car buying and selling process, saving the consumer significant time to complete the transaction.
“We want to meet clients where they are most comfortable and Clicklane gives the buyer or seller complete control,” said Tony Carimi, Managing Director of Park Place Dealerships. “Some clients enjoy in-person car shopping while others want to make the transaction as straightforward as possible. Through Clicklane, our clients can skip the visit to the dealership and complete the entire purchase online.
Clicklane is a unique platform that allows the consumer to buy or sell their automobile in approximately 15 minutes. While the online car-buying experience has been available for some time, Clicklane modifies the process to six easy steps that include:
- Find Your Dream Car – New, Pre-Owned or Certified (3 minutes)
- Easy Trade – Enter VIN to get value of your car and real-time payoff amount (3 minutes)
- Pick Your Payments – Select a payment structure that works for you (3 minutes)
- Get the Best Rate – Choose the rate you want from more than 30 lenders (3 minutes)
- Digitally Sign Paperwork– Sign all documents via DocuSign® (3 minutes) and wait for the car to be delivered to your home or business within a few days.
“Park Place is best known for its great customer service and Clicklane extends this experience right to the front door of our most loyal clients, as well as attracts new clients,” continued Carimi. “Online shopping will continue to grow and we expect the automotive category will represent a shift in this trend from first-time buyers to high-income earners.”
Clicklane has a seven-day, 1,000-mile money back guarantee on all online purchases. The consumer can return the vehicle to the dealership at their expense in the same condition as it was upon delivery with no questions asked.
Unlike other online buying platforms, Clicklane gives real-time information such as trade-in values calculated to the penny, as well as loan payoffs. Payment figures are based on local taxes and fees so the consumer can be confident the calculations are accurate during the online purchasing experience.
Park Place Dealerships was founded in 1987. For the past 34 years, the company has been engaged in the community through its support of the arts, medical research, children’s advocacy and education. Park Place employs more than 1,400 members and operates eight full-service dealerships representing luxury brands including Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Volvo, Jaguar, and Land Rover. For more info, visit parkplace.com.
Park Place Dealerships opened a new Mercedes-Benz Sprinter store February 8 at 3333 Atwell Street, one block from their flagship Mercedes-Benz dealership (Park Place Motorcars Dallas) on Lemmon Avenue. The 21,428 square-foot facility houses sales and service, including 12 service bays with eight lifts.
“Throughout the years, we’ve assisted clients out of our dealership with the design, purchase and service of Sprinter vans for their business and personal needs,” said Robert Morris, General Manager of Sprinter Dallas and Park Place Motorcars Dallas. “This new store will enable us to better serve or clients, whether they need a single Sprinter van or a fleet of 30. We’ve also seen a trend in custom conversions for personal travel. The beauty of the Sprinter is its versatility with the quality and reliability of Mercedes-Benz.”
Mercedes-Benz created the world’s first motorized truck/van in 1896. Produced by Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft, and delivered to a customer in London, the vehicle offered a 1500 kg (3,307 pound) payload with a two-cylinder engine that delivered a top speed of 7 mph. In the same year, rival Karl Benz developed a van-type delivery vehicle for supply to a Paris department store. In 1926, Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft and Benz joined forces to form Daimler-Benz AG.
“With 13 different models, and endless options to customize the interior for specific needs, today’s Sprinter is the most adaptable van on the market,” says Morris. “And every Sprinter comes with Mercedes PRO Connect, an integrated vehicle monitoring software that connects drivers and businesses to raise efficiency, increase security and improve safety. And it’s for free for three years.”
In 1995, the Sprinter van launched in Europe. Available in Traveliner, panel van and pick-up versions, it introduced cutting-edge technology like ABS anti-lock braking as standard equipment.
In 2010, the Sprinter van entered the U.S. market. In 2013, Sprinter set a new benchmark for efficiency, safety and dynamics with an updated model that introduced new industry-leading safety systems such as Crosswind Assist, Collision Prevention Assist, Blind Spot Assist, High Beam Assist and Lane Keeping Assist. Perhaps most importantly for a commercial vehicle, the Sprinter’s low fuel consumption made it the most efficient vehicle in its segment.
Located near Love Field, Park Place Sprinter Dallas is open 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. Monday – Friday, and open until 6 p.m. Saturday. Parts and Service hours are 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday – Friday, and open until 5 p.m. Saturday. For more info, visit us at parkplace.com.
Given that Germaine Ambres serves as New Car Sales Director for Park Place Volvo, you’d expect that his home driveway might display the Swedish brand’s latest and greatest.
You’d be partly right.
“My wife Sekolia and I are really true to the brand in that we tend to hold onto our cars. We like paying them off. She’s got a 2013 S60. We’re all like that at our store. Besides,” he adds, “it’s a Volvo, it’s barely broken in!”
Ambres certainly puts Volvo’s much-vaunted reputation for durability and reliability to the test: he drives his company-provided XC90 about 80 miles roundtrip to work every day. His solution for not going bonkers – hands-free phone calls, audiobooks, and music (he likes WRR, where fellow Volvo team member Kurt Rongey once served as Operations and Programming Manager).
Or he just muses.
“In fact, just yesterday I was noticing all the other dealerships I pass by on my drive and thinking how fortunate I am to be with Park Place,” he says. “Leadership’s commitment to creating exceptional client experiences is real. And Donny (Lambrecht, Park Place Volvo General Manager) fosters a genuinely warm family feeling at our store. We all have a great time. It’s fun coming to work.”
Fun? At work? Well, sure, if you define fun as frequent, boisterous outbursts of laughter. “We’re all professionals but perhaps, every once in a while, we might be slightly guilty of acting like a bunch of over-sugared fifth-graders,” Ambres admits with a grin. “But we’re highly responsible fifth-graders!”
The Houston-born Ambres knows a thing or two about responsibility. While at Lamar High School, he was extremely active in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes organization, and then attended Houston Baptist University, graduating with a degree in biblical counseling.
He joined a Toyota dealership for a year, serving as part of their internet team. “I really enjoyed it,” he says. But several clients told him that he “really should take a look at Park Place, it’s more your kind of place.” So in 2007 he took a good long look, and it was most definitely his kind of place.
“The people and the brand sold me and it’s been home ever since,” he smiles. “The best part of my job is connecting with clients. Just last week, one of my very first clients came in and seeing the same faces is just awesome. We bring out the best in each other. It’s really a case of the right people in the right place for the right motives. Neat chemistry!”
In his rare spare time, he loves to cook. “I’m Cajun by ancestry, so I like making creole and gumbo, real southern comfort foods. But I also love Italian! I make a mean lasagna. In fact, I just spent $70 on ingredients – only the best meats, cheeses, a good cabernet in the sauce, and oh boy, it’s really worth the investment.”
He’s also active in his church, and finds that his degree is helpful in his volunteer couples counseling services.
So yeah, he’s a busy, cheerful and involved guy. But what many of his clients, and even some of his team members may not know, is that after college graduation and before entering his chosen profession, he leveraged his degree into several tours of missionary work.
“To say it was eye-opening is an understatement,” he says. “We visited St. Petersburg in Russia and various villages throughout India, and those experiences changed my life. We ran pioneer camps where we’d feed Russian kids who had nothing. They literally relied on us for meals. And then to view the opulence of the czars, who put gold on top of their castles while their people starved, was intense. In India, we helped desperately poor people and to look into their eyes …” His voice trails off at the memory.
“The point is that people are people everywhere, and it’s both humbling and an honor to be of service,” he says. “And you can serve others anywhere, through all your routine daily interactions. Serving with honesty and true humility is the highest calling of all.”
Over the past three decades, Park Place Dealerships has become a well-known automotive choice for clients to purchase, service or repair a vehicle in Texas. Established in 1987 with a single Mercedes-Benz dealership in Dallas, Park Place added a Lexus dealership in 1991, along with Porsche in 1995. Distinguishing their employees as “members,” the company developed a reputation for a world-class client experience. Creating events that gave guests an inside look at new vehicles while supporting causes important to the community, Park Place established itself as a company with a big heart.
“Park Place is grounded on the principle that we are looking to cultivate a relationship, not just sell someone a car,” explains Tony Carimi, Park Place Dealerships Managing Director. “We strive to develop a relationships where we truly understand a client’s automotive needs. In fact, we’ve provided vehicles for multiple generations within a family because we developed that trust with the initial client.”
Park Place’s success has been built on a continuing commitment to their members and delivering exceptional client service. Many of the Park Place members have been with the company for more than 10 years because they love where they work, and they genuinely care for their clients and fellow members.
“I started with Park Place in 2002 as Service Director at the original Mercedes-Benz store,” said Carimi. “No matter a member’s title or position, they are the Park Place experience for our clients. That cannot be duplicated by any other company. We can never forget that our clients have a choice where they buy and service their vehicles.”
The luxury automotive group credits their core values as helping to build the company’s brand:
In its most simplistic form, Park Place members do the right thing because it is the right thing to do… no matter what. A technician found a pouch full of cash while servicing a car. He immediately contacted his supervisor, and the pouch was put in a safe. The next morning the client called frantically looking for a “package” he’d left in his car. The pouch contained $50,000, and not a single dollar was missing.
Park Place members passionately care about their clients, communities and fellow members. Frequently, clients report that a member has gone above and beyond to take care of them. It runs throughout the company from the moment someone walks into a dealership. Personalized interactions with the sales, service and collision centers, create an unparalleled experience.
Park Place empowers members to make decisions to take care of their clients. There’s no handing someone off to a supervisor because the member has the authority to make a situation right.
Members have the strength and character to remain optimistic and provide resolutions to challenging situations. That has never been tested more than over the past year as the dealerships were defined as “essential services” during the pandemic. Members take care of clients based on their individual needs and circumstances.
“It all comes back to our people,” emphasized Carimi. “We don’t just hire people with automotive experience. We hire people for their passion and servant’s heart, then we train them for success. And that means ongoing training throughout the year for every member to ensure their personal and professional success.”
Many of the company’s leadership development classes are led by senior executives, with 90% of its managers being promoted from within. Park Place established a Women in Automotive Council to mentor and encourage their female members. Women hold positions at the highest levels, including parts directors and service directors, as well as sales, F&I and human resources managers. The company has been named to the Dallas Morning News “100 Best Places to Work” list for 10 consecutive years.
Over the past 33 years, Park Place has supported hundreds of non-profits through grants, in-kind donations, event sponsorships, and unique experiences. Park Place Cares supports philanthropic efforts in the arts, medical research, children’s advocacy, and education.
Park Place employs more than 1,400 members and operates eight full-service dealerships, representing nine luxury brands including Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Volvo, Jaguar, and Land Rover. Park Place BodyWerks Collision Centers in Fort Worth and Dallas, and the Park Place Auto Auction, round out the company’s offerings.
Five local organizations were recognized for their efforts in the community amid difficult conditions this year. Park Place Motorcars Arlington chose the nonprofits based on their commitment to education, children, and health.
Five non-profits were chosen in celebration of Park Place Motorcars Arlington’s five-year anniversary. The dealership donated a total of $10,000 to the following organizations:
- Mansfield Education Foundation
- Texas Rangers Baseball Foundation
- Boys & Girls Clubof Arlington
- Arlington Education Foundation
- Texas Health Arlington Memorial
“It is a privilege to serve Arlington, Mansfield, and the surrounding area,” said Malcolm Gage, General Manager of Park Place Motorcars Arlington. “As we celebrate five years in Arlington, Park Place continues to reinforce the importance of giving back in the community where our members live and work.”
The Park Place Cares program supports more than 300 organizations around the Dallas-Fort Worth area throughout the year. Park Place’s members are further challenged to volunteer their time and resources to serve local communities.
Park Place Dealerships was founded in 1987. For the past 33 years, the company has been engaged in the community through its support of the arts, medical research, children’s advocacy and education. Park Place employs more than 1,400 members and operates eight full-service dealerships representing luxury brands including Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Volvo, Jaguar, and Land Rover. For more info, visit parkplace.com.
It was probably one of the quietest Porsche test drives in recorded history. When you press the ‘start’ button on the all-electric Porsche Taycan, there’s no rumble… not even a purr. But don’t let the absence of engine noise or the lack of fossil fuels emissions fool you. Once the accelerator is depressed, the stylish sedan effortlessly rockets from 0-to-60 in less than three seconds. And it does so with the smooth handling that only pure Porsche DNA can provide. Don’t worry. Porsche offers an option for a simulated, electronic engine sound for fans of the rumble and roar.
Park Place Porsche Dallas recently held a day-long Porsche Taycan test drive event to benefit the Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center. For each Taycan test drive, Park Place donated $100 to DCAC to help improve the lives of abused children in Dallas County and to provide national leadership on child abuse issues. More than 28,000 cases of child abuse were reported last year in Dallas County.
Guests enjoyed freshly grilled bites and refreshing, alcohol-free mocktails, courtesy of the culinary team from the Thompson Dallas Hotel. Located on North Akard Street at the heart of downtown Dallas, the new 51-story tower is set to debut in November 2020.
Boasting 750 horsepower, the 2020 Porsche Taycan (aptly rhymes with icon) is a four-door sedan that accelerates faster than a skydiver in free fall and can partially recharge for 62 miles of range in just over five minutes. While it can take tight curves like a sports car, it also offers the smooth ride of a luxury sedan.
The Taycan can go approximately 200 miles on a full charge. Owners can charge it overnight from the comfort of their home, or at one of more than 400 Electrify America charging stations across the U.S. With apps and services on their smart phone, drivers can control the charging process, check the charging status, or bring the cabin of their Porsche to a comfortable temperature, all from the comfort of their home or office.
Over the past 33 years, Park Place has supported hundreds of non-profits through grants, in-kind donations, event sponsorships, and unique experiences across Dallas/Fort Worth. Through Park Place Cares, the luxury automotive group supports philanthropic efforts in the arts, medical research, children’s advocacy, and education. Among the community service projects in which Park Place members are currently engaged, hundreds of members are volunteering their time and talents to build a home with Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity in a low-income neighborhood.
DCAC is the only agency of its kind in Dallas County, working in agreement with public and private agencies to investigate, prosecute, and provide healing services for child abuse cases in Dallas County. The agency reduces the re-victimization of the child, removes barriers to investigation and treatment, and enhances criminal prosecution with a distinctive multidisciplinary and united approach to these complex and severe cases. More info is available at dcac.org.
When the Mercedes-Benz GLA was initially released in 2014, the subcompact model was introduced as the SUV sibling of the CLA (the Mercedes-Benz subcompact 4-door coupe). Many GLA drivers also noticed the interior was similar to the now-extinct SUV GLK350 (a model that was last available for new retail in 2015). Thanks to a beautiful exterior makeover, modern interior technologies, and enhanced Mercedes-Benz performance, the new 2021 GLA is out to prove it has a personality of its own.
Rejuvenated Interior Leads GLA Refresh
A slew of new changes is apparent once you enter the new GLA. A standard dual, digital dashboard, which is also available inside most Mercedes-Benz vehicles, finally makes an appearance in the 2021 GLAs. The new, high energy screens replace the analog instrument cluster and pop-up 7-inch monitor that left owners wanting more.
The Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) infotainment interface will also be a welcomed sight for 2021 GLA drivers. Voice command prompts to speak with your Mercedes-Benz gives hands-free driving a contemporary experience. The air vents also feature an aviation-style design that provides a cock-pit vibe to the GLA front row.
Our top interior upgrades available with the 2021 GLA include the Premium Package including larger 10-inch displays and a 64-color ambient lighting option that adds some pizazz to your daily drive.
New GLA Showcases Smooth Stance
A big takeaway from our GLA first impressions is how smooth the exterior angles are. When walking up to the 2021 subcompact SUV, you’ll be amazed at how much the profile mirrors other modern, Mercedes-Benz SUVs. Previously, the GLA stood out for its deep side indentions and round curves.
This second-generation does a wonderful job of introducing a subtle side profile with a modern athletic stance.
Not only is the GLA 3.5 inches taller than the previous model, it also sits higher than the CLA and A-Class (the Mercedes-Benz premium compact sedan). Also, a driver can anticipate slight increases to the wheelbase and width vehicle that also gives rear passengers some additional room than previous GLA models.
For those who may be torn between the size and styling profile of the A-Class sedan and GLC SUV, a 2021 GLA is the perfect selection.
Other Notable GLA Details
Drivers should also notice a few more 2021 GLA details:
- A shiftier experience thanks to a new 8-speed dual-clutch transmission
- More passenger control with new adjustable rear seats
- Additional pedal to the medal with 221 horsepower (HP) an increase from 208 HP with the previous generation
- Front-wheel drive is the standard for GLA models, however, finding a GLA 4MATIC variant will give you all-wheel-drive control.
- Great fuel efficiency from the 2.0L, 4 cylinder engine with an estimated 25 MPG in the city and 34 MPG highway fuel economy
Given the Mercedes-Benz track record for next-generation upgrades, we would not be surprised to see the 2021 GLA become one of the best re-models in the automotive industry. For more details on the 2021 Mercedes-Benz GLA and potential Mercedes-AMG GLA, contact Park Place Motorcars today.