WINCHESTER — Mitsubishi Motors North America President and CEO Yoichi Yokozawa had high praise for its Winchester store during a visit to the dealership Saturday morning.
Yokozawa said the dealership, located at 3880 Valley Pike, was a “top player” within the company after showing success since becoming a Mitsubishi dealership in January.
“This dealership opened just a few months ago and is already showing a great performance,” Yokozawa said. “I wanted to meet the people here and see what the secret behind it has been.”
Adam Ghali, the dealership’s general manager, said the key to success has been customer service.
“I came from a high line store, and I took that philosophy and implemented it here,” Ghali said. “When you do that, people don’t expect it. It’s all about people and how you treat them. It’s a small community, so you want people to come back.”
The Winchester dealership began as A-1 Auto Sales on Berryville Avenue about nine years ago and has continued to outgrow locations before moving to its current location in 2016, Ghali said. He credited that success to his staff continuing to build relationships and put customers first.
“Bringing that philosophy to a small town like Winchester has paid off pretty good,” Ghali said.
Yokozawa, who has been with the company for over 22 years, was appointed president and CEO of Mitsubishi Motors North America (MMNA) in late March after having served in the same role from April of 2011 through February of 2014. He’s credited with being a pivotal player in the company’s financial and strategic planning side as well as global marketing and sales organizations. He also played a key role in the Nissan-Mitsubishi Motors Corporation merger.
Upon stepping back into the role, Yokozawa said he was most interested in meeting with leaders whose dealerships were performing well.
“I wanted to get to know the key players to understand what our current business is like,” Yokozawa said.
He noted this was an ideal time, since the company’s headquarters in Tennessee is still mainly working remotely because of COVID-19.
As far as changes he’s noticed, Yokozawa said he was excited to see how the company has grown since his last stint as head of the North American operations. He said business has almost doubled since he was last in the role in 2014.
Yokozawa said that it’s an exciting time to be back in his new role with new and revamped Mitsubishi models hitting the market.
“We’re refreshing our product,” he said. “We’re looking forward to these being a game changer for us.”