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New Mossy Toyota dealership an asset to beach community

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Mossy Automotive Group's automotive showrooms increasingly are designed as showcases for the business districts, in addition to comfortable environments for family and children. The soon-to-be completed Mossy Toyota showroom in Pacific Beach demonstrates the company's commitment to advance the appearance of the communities in which it does business while also escalating the level of products and services available to the consumer.

The change at Mossy Toyota in Pacific Beach has been dramatic. Originally, the facility operated as Mission Bay Volkswagen. In 1990 the dealership transitioned to Pacific Beach Toyota, then, Mossy Automotive Group purchased the dealership in 2002. The old facility, tucked into a corner on Mission Bay Drive just off Interstate 5 in Pacific Beach, included a small showroom and 17 service bays.

The 89,000-square-foot Mossy Toyota showroom, located on 3.6 acres in Pacific Beach, consists of a showroom, service area and retail parts center.

According to Jason Mossy, general manager of Mossy Toyota, that old facility needed more than some paint and renovation. "From the beginning, we recognized that we had a commitment to our customers and the community itself," he said. "Our plan from the outset was to build a showcase for Toyota that the community would welcome."

Planning for the new Mossy Toyota dealership took four years and a great deal of community support. Once all the permits were obtained, the organization completely demolished the existing facility and started from scratch. "We had a terrific opportunity to upgrade everything and provide more cohesive services. For example, for the first time in more than a decade, sales, service and parts are under the same roof," he said.

"Fortunately," said Mossy, "during the demolition phase, we were able to lease a facility located nearby to house the service and parts operations throughout the construction project. "It was extremely important to us to maintain the loyalty of our customer base through continuous access to parts and service, even during a complete rebuild like Mossy Toyota in Pacific Beach."

In redesigning the new facility, Mossy incorporated Toyota's latest design elements, called Image USA II. Toyota's Image USA II is a program aimed at upgrading dealership exteriors and interiors with a special emphasis on customer touch points. "The idea is to have every aspect of the facility focused on the customer," said Mossy.

The 89,000-square-foot building consists of a showroom, service area and a retail parts center. It is located on 3.6 acres and designed to benefit the surrounding area with landscaping that complements the modern design of facility and the overall appearance of Mission Bay Drive.

The service space itself is state-of-the-art. It has 49 service bays with Snap on Build a Bay toolboxes. In addition to its regular staff of certified automotive technicians, Mossy Toyota employs 12 hybrid certified technicians. A vacuum system is plumbed through PT Deck so every vehicle is vacuumed after service and prior to delivery back to the customer and a fully automated car wash system. The showroom has plasma TVs for product presentations and information, a full coffee bar and children's play area. Accessibility through the showroom is facilitated by elevators to the top deck.

Mossy Toyota in Pacific Beach will also host a customer call center to provide a higher level of customer service. This department will handle all service appointments and notify clients when they are due for service and advice clients of any service campaigns that are applicable to their vehicle. Service advisers will cashier their own tickets, allowing the customer to receive all of the information needed during pick up of the vehicle and not be sent to a cashier.

Service and Parts employees will wear Hawaiian theme apparel and use communications devices provided by Motorola. "We're working hard to offer our customers everything they could possibly expect from a dealer," said Mossy.

Ellman is founder of Beck Ellman Heald.

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