JEFFERSON CITY – The Riley Auto Group just celebrated its 85th anniversary in September. On Friday, it announced the sale of Riley Chevrolet Buick GMC Cadillac, Riley Toyota and Riley Collision Center to Drewing Automotive Group of Columbia.
I’m here in Jefferson City where the Riley Auto Group in a press release announced the sale of Riley Chevrolet Buick GMC Cadillac, Riley Toyota and Riley Collision Center to Drewing Automotive Group. @KOMUnews pic.twitter.com/po1ti0a43l— Grayson Rainey (@GraysonRainey12) October 15, 2021
For some Jefferson City residents, the Riley family is a household name.
“The Rileys have always been a prominent family in Jefferson City," Caleb Crocker, a Riley Auto Group customer said. "They’ve always been a well-respected family in Jeff City.”
Jason Holtmeyer said he bought his truck from Riley Auto Group. He said it's hard to believe the business would be sold.
"I didn't think they'd ever sell," Holtmeyer said. "Riley has a great reputation for customer service."
Crocker said he grew up with the kids of Riley Chevrolet's owner.
“I’ve pretty much known them since we were kids," Crocker said.
Crocker said he's familiar with the family for a different reason too.
"They’re always sponsoring baseball, youth sports teams and you see their name everywhere around town.”
Crocker said he respects how much the business has given back to the community throughout the years.
“You just kind of have to have a lot of respect for a company like that, that is willing to not just provide a service to the community but also reinvest in the community," Crocker said.
Crocker said he's always felt accommodated by the company's employees.
“When you walk in there you’re not going to get treated like just another person coming down the line," Crocker said.
After many years and many different cars, Crocker said the way he's been treated has never changed.
“The salespeople that I’ve dealt with at Riley, they know me by name when I come in," Crocker said. "Even years after purchasing a vehicle they will always know me by name.”
Although Crocker said he's disappointed to see the company's name go, he said he's hopeful the Riley family will continue to see success in the community.
“It’s a little disheartening and I’m a little upset to see them go, but I wish them the best of luck in their endeavors," Crocker said.
The sale is expected to close in December. The new dealerships will operate under the names of Rusty Drewing Toyota and Rusty Drewing Chevrolet Buick GMC Cadillac.