Planet Hyundai Sahara's new general manager, Paul Pelletier, is a 30-year veteran of the automobile business and is now watching his son, Paul Pelletier Jr., follow in his footsteps.
The older Pelletier started in the car business at the age of 18 in Lynn, Mass., working his way up the ladder after starting as lot porter before working in the sales and finance departments nearly 30 years ago.
The younger Pelletier, 24, knew eight years ago that he wanted to be a part of the car business and its always-changing, always-challenging atmosphere.
"Like my dad, I started as a lot porter," he said. "We were living in Round Rock, Texas, at the time and I was working at Classic Toyota."
It was the thrill of selling a vehicle, a Hyundai in particular, that got him hooked.
"My first car deal was actually two leases," said the younger Pelletier. "I leased two Elantras to a husband and wife. Selling my first cars definitely generated a great sense of satisfaction. I like selling this product since it's so well-respected and I don't feel as though I have to worry about my customers after they drive away. Not only that, but the customers who buy our cars usually refer business to us later, too, since they love the Hyundai's many features."
So far, Pelletier's list of customers has included a wide range of buyers from casino dealers to tattoo artists and a cocktail waitress along with a nurse.
"Your customers become your friends. They network with you to help find others a good, dependable vehicle," he said.
The older Pelletier concurred with his son that the car business can be rewarding although it also includes long hours and incredible dedication to continually stay up-to-date on the business.
"This is a business and it's one that can be very rewarding if you take it seriously," he explained. "I was very nervous when I started, but the industry has been very good to my family. You must be dedicated to be successful in this business. We put in the time but the Hyundai virtually sells itself. With a Hyundai you get a lot of car for your money, terrific fuel efficiency at a time gas cost is a major consideration, a very safe vehicle and a warranty that can't be beat."
Hyundai offers a 10-year, 100,000-mile engine and a five-year, 60,000-mile factory warranty.
Planet Hyundai Sahara, at 7150 W. Sahara Ave., is part of a group of locally owned dealerships that also includes Planet Hyundai Centennial at 6200 Centennial Center Drive in the northwest valley and Planet Hyundai Used Car Superstore at 7100 W. Sahara Ave.
For more information, call 702-938-1400 (Sahara) or 702-483-2200 (Centennial), or visit www.planetlv.com.