Cable-Dahmer Auto Group Inc. this spring opened its new Auto Direct pre-owned automotive dealership and an eco-friendly collision repair center at 11911 E. U.S. 40, just east of Blue Ridge Boulevard at the former site of Broome Cadillac.
What’s new: Cable-Dahmer Auto Group Inc. this spring opened its new Auto Direct pre-owned automotive dealership and an eco-friendly collision repair center at 11911 E. U.S. 40, just east of Blue Ridge Boulevard at the former site of Broome Cadillac. The company bought Broome last year.
“We knew it was the perfect opportunity” for an expanded facility, says Neal Ecord, body shop director.
Better for the environment: At the 18,000-square-foot collision repair center, the company has switched to waterborne paint, something that started in Southern California shops several years ago. The industry overall is headed in that direction, Ecord said.
“So we’re really trying to keep the atmosphere cleaner and go more green,” he said.
The chief benefit is cutting down on volatile organic compounds, which are hazardous. The industry says the change overall means 50 to 60 percent less pollution, according to Ecord, and it’s better for employees.
Is it harder to do?
“Not now, because I think we’ve got the hang of it,” Ecord says.
The company takes other steps as well. Metal, glass and plastic materials are recycled rather than disposed, and the company recycles 50 to 75 tons of cardboard a year.
Better for business: “We really kind of outgrew our other place” on Noland Road, Ecord says.
With this expansion, Ecord has about double the space, and he was able to design it from step one.
The body shop has 31 employees, “and I will continue to add,” he says.
Cable-Dahmer Auto Group says it’s the largest Chevrolet dealership in the metro area and the second largest dealership overall, based on the number of sales. In addition to Cable-Dahmer Chevrolet on Noland and at 103rd Street and Wornall Road in Kansas City, it has Cable-Dahmer Buick GMC Cadillac on Noland. Overall, it says it’s put $1.5 million to the facilities at the old Broome site.
“There’s a huge customer base that grew here based on the old Broome (and) Ketchum,” Ecord says.
Auto Direct also is new. “It’s going OK,” Ecord says.
Doing the job: Ecord has been doing this since 1974. “I’m a car guy,” he says. He enjoyed the chance to built the new shop and bring in new technology. “There’s a lot of satisfaction to doing a craft like this,” he says.