Best Place to Buy a Car - Best of Lawrence: 2014 - Shopping

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Lawrence Journal-World

Crown Automotive

Best Place to Buy a Car

Crown Automotive

3430 S. Iowa St.

With a showroom of about 70,000 square feet, Crown Toyota, Scion, Volkswagen has enough to room to do more than just sell cars.

That’s why the dealership has hosted events such as masquerade balls to benefit breast cancer research, quiz bowl events for the local high schools and home shows for the local building industry.

Company owner Miles Schnaer thinks being involved with the community is part of doing business in the city, said Randy Habiger, general sales manager for the dealership.

“He wants all of us at the dealership to have a mentality of treating people the way you want to be treated,” Habiger said.

Area residents evidently have liked the results. The Crown Automotive dealership was named by voters as Best of Lawrence in the category of places to buy a car.

“In a lot of ways, this award means more to us than the national awards we receive,” Habiger said. “It really says something about what the local people are thinking about us.”

The dealership is celebrating its 20th anniversary in Lawrence. It was one of the first in the area to adopt the idea of mega showrooms that allow buyers to have a big experience when shopping for a vehicle.

“When people come in to buy a car, they sometimes already have a negative connotation,” Habiger said. “We really try to have fun with the experience.”

The approach has worked, he said. The company has won national awards from both Toyota and Volkswagen for its sales volume and service. Habiger said beyond the amenities at the dealership, he thinks a large part of the success goes back to the philosophy the dealership tries to employ.

“It is a great place to work,” Habiger said. “When you are around town and you see someone you have sold to, you don’t have to hang your head when you work for Crown. We take care of people, so we can be proud of what we’re doing.”

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