Ohio Dealership Offers Charity Test Drives to School Groups, Grows Customer Base | Edmunds

Ohio Dealership Offers Charity Test Drives to School Groups, Grows Customer Base


Just the Facts:
  • Grogan's Towne Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram in Toledo, Ohio holds charity test-drives for various school-sponsored groups.
  • Schools may earn up to $5,000 with the fundraiser.
  • The community-minded effort helps to drive showroom traffic.

TOLEDO, Ohio — To entice shoppers into the showroom, Grogan's Towne Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram goes to school.

The Toledo dealership regularly holds charity test-drives for various school-sponsored groups. Members of the community are invited to take a brief test-drive of either a Dodge or a Chrysler vehicle. For each test-drive taken, that brand donates $20 to the school group.

The maximum a school can earn is $5,000.

"It's a pretty easy way for a school to earn money and let us give back to the community," Denny Amrhein, general manager/partner at Grogan's Towne Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram told Edmunds.

The schools just have to recruit the drivers, while his dealership provides the cars and the staff.

Not only does the charity event promote goodwill in the community, but also his sales staff gets an opportunity to mingle with potential buyers, Amrhein said.

"We sell a lot of cars off of this experience," he said. "We get at least four or five people after each event coming in telling us they are buying from us because they test-drove one at a school and they wanted to thank us for supporting them."

Grogan's Towne Chrysler has a long history of supporting local schools. In 2011, it teamed up with Bedford School District to pay off the debt owed on the Bedford Community Stadium in Temperance, Michigan. The district sold the name of the field to the north Toledo car dealership for $264,000, which will be paid over 12 years.

In doing so, it made history. The renamed Grogan's Towne Field marks the first time in Michigan history that a school district named its field after a corporate donor.

"They were going to cut a lot of programs, like soccer, unless someone stepped in," Amrhein said. "We're glad we could help the community."

Edmunds says: The power of giving back pays off exponentially, one dealer finds.

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