Growing Lithia Motors makes first 2022 acquisitions

Lithia Motors Inc. this week made its first dealership acquisition of 2022 when it bought three dealerships in Northern California, while the fast-growing group also closed a BMW store in New York.

Lithia bought Roseville Toyota and John L Sullivan Chevrolet, both in Roseville, Calif., and John L. Sullivan Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Ram in Yuba City from John Sullivan of Sullivan Auto Group on Jan. 30, according to Tom Dobry, Lithia’s vice president of marketing.

Roseville and Yuba City are both north of Sacramento.

Lithia is retaining each of the stores’ names. The three dealerships will add an expected $700 million to Lithia’s annual revenue, Dobry said in an email to Automotive News. Tony Sawyer of AES Automotive Enterprises represented the seller in the transaction.

The acquisition marks Lithia’s first purchase since late November when it bought three Ford dealerships across Michigan and Florida from Elder Automotive Group, Dobry confirmed.

The Sacramento Business Journal reported on the Sullivan Auto Group transaction on Tuesday. The publication reported that Sullivan Auto Group’s fourth dealership, Roseville Kia, also was sold this week to Sullivan’s nephew, David Rodgers.

The Sacramento Business Journal also reported that Rodgers filed a lawsuit last year against his uncle over Sullivan’s sale of a dealership in Livermore, Calif., which “the nephew claims was on terms unfavorable to him as a stakeholder, constituting breach of contract and fraud.” The publication reported that “Sullivan countered with his own suit alleging fraud and breach of fiduciary duty against Rodgers.”

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