As used-car manager of the Planet Hyundai Used Car Super Store at 7100 W. Sahara Ave., Shannon Clay is a firm believer that preowned vehicles can many times be the best possible alternative for buyers.
Clay, who hails from Austin, Texas, has been in the car business for 14 years. After being self-employed, he entered the car business in Texas and quickly learned the ins and outs.
"Right now, the value of used cars is going up big time," said Clay, who has lived in Las Vegas for six months. "Hurricane Sandy on the East Coast had a lot to do with that when it hit in late October."
Clay said the loss of vehicles on the East Coast was staggering.
"There were an estimated 250,000 cars lost in Hurricane Sandy," Clay explained. "For instance, many insurance representatives from back there are now shopping for replacement cars from the auctions in Southern Nevada. The increased competition here is driving up demand for used cars, for sure."
Hyundai's used-car retention values have remained strong, too. Competing dealerships are clamoring to get preowned Hyundais, he said.
"The preowned Hyundai is in demand right now because of fuel economy and the bang you get for your investment," Clay said.
Planet Hyundai Used Car Superstore opened in July . The dealership usually has about 120 to 130 preowned vehicles on the lot and each car comes with a warranty.
"We're not concerned with the level of credit a person has, especially considering the state of the local economy. Many people have experienced foreclosures, bankruptcies and the loss of employment, but they do not have to feel embarrassed by their past or present situations," Clay said. "We can make it all work. It just takes finding the right car and the right financing plan."
Clay said ensuring that customers get the chance to buy a car also is based on the ability to purchase preowned vehicles at affordable prices.
"We use several networks to get our cars," he said. "We have buyers all over that help us get vehicles. We use a vehicle locator and if a person needs a particular car, we have people we trust that can find that particular vehicle."
Clay said requested vehicles can usually be found within 24 to 72 hours . He said that the Hyundai Sonata has the biggest demand.
"We have that much confidence in our people," he said. "The people that own this dealership have connections all over the country."
Clay works daily with fellow used car manager Jim Smith to keep the lot filled with quality vehicles.
"This is definitely a teamwork endeavor," Clay said. "It takes all of us working as a team to make sure we have quality vehicles available at all times."
Planet Hyundai Super Store is open from 8:30 a.m. until 9 p.m. six days a week. For more information on the dealership, call 702-938-1400.
The dealership is part of an umbrella group of stores that also includes Planet Hyundai Sahara, 7150 W. Sahara Ave., and Planet Hyundai Centennial, 6200 Centennial Center Blvd. Further information can be found by calling Planet Hyundai Centennial at 702 483-2200, Planet Hyundai Sahara at 702-938-1400 or by visiting www.planetlv.com.