september 15, 2020 - Mitsubishi
Mitsubishi Motors Dealer Partner Spotlight – Hayward Mitsubishi on the value of community and of following your dreams
September 15, 2020 — FRANKLIN, Tenn
Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc. (MMNA) is celebrating dealer partners who go above and beyond for their communities. They provide more than just a great place to buy a car – they help their home towns thrive in the good times and heal in the challenging times. They rise to the occasion in support of the community, whatever the occasion may be. This month, we are proud to feature Ayman Moussa, owner of Hayward Mitsubishi in Hayward, California.
Five Questions with Ayman Moussa
Hayward Mitsubishi, Hayward, California
- Since Hayward Mitsubishi opened its doors in 2016, it has focused on more than just selling reliable transportation, but on being a partner and champion for the Hayward community. Why is that so important to you?
When we opened our doors in Hayward, Chadi and I understood that, to be successful, we must think and plan long term. Long term for us meant that we needed to establish a name for ourselves in the community. We did not want to be the dealer that sells a car today and hides from the customer tomorrow. On the contrary, we wanted to see our customers again, along with their families and friends, and be there for them when they need us. We achieved that, and it is apparent, as over 60 percent of our customers live or work in Hayward. Most of our customers are either repeat or referrals from other Hayward Mitsubishi customers. We built our business with one goal in mind: customer loyalty. For that to happen, we must continue to be a good partner to the community.
- It is no secret that the dealer ownership body in this country could and should be more diverse. What advice do you have for entrepreneurs of color, looking to start a business or to branch out, and facing systemic barriers to entry?
The "American Dream" is not a lost cause. It is my strong belief that I could not have accomplished what I have so far, if I did not live in America. Since I stepped foot in this country, I've felt welcomed. Now, there were many cases in which I felt and experienced some hardship, because of my background, and perhaps my accent. However, I never let that stop me from pursuing my dreams. In any country, there is the good, and there is the bad. One's color, religion, or race should not stop them from following their dreams. America is a beautiful place and her people are amazing. I must not forget the role that a company like Mitsubishi Motors played in my life. The diverse culture of MMNA reflects the grand American culture of love, openness and embrace.
- Mitsubishi has been called "the right car for the right time," because buyers receive the maximum value for their dollar. Is this ringing true for Hayward customers? What tactics are you employing to reach potential customers with this message?
I have been in the business for 18 years, and I can firmly say that Mitsubishi offers the best bang for your buck. Mitsubishi offers great value for a new car, and most of the Mitsubishi models we carry are less expensive than others we sell in the same category or class. Most importantly, the cost of ownership for Mitsubishi is extremely affordable. With the right maintenance methods, the car can last for a lifetime. We simply present these benefits to any customer who is trying to buy a used car, and when we put the numbers on paper, they realize that buying a new car is to their benefit. I live in Hayward, where the household income is not always high, and I feel excited every time I see a customer driving a Mitsubishi. This tells us that customers are realizing the benefit of buying a Mitsubishi.
- You are big advocates for digitizing the shopping experience for your customers, while at the same time champions for delivering a great brick-and-mortar experience. How do you balance digital vs brick-and-mortar in terms of appealing to new customers and meeting their diverse needs?
The modern customer can buy everything online, and they can have it delivered same-day. We realize the importance of online shopping, so we have implemented tools to give customers the option to build and purchase a vehicle from the comfort of their homes. We must remain flexible though, because often, even online shoppers want to come into a store to finalize a deal. Then there are customers who still see the benefit of visiting the store to touch and test the product they are purchasing. We will continue supporting digital retail tools, with the understanding that, as long as humans are social beings, there will always be a need for brick-and-mortar.
- You opened Autoland in 2012, and soon after, it became the largest volume used car dealership in Hayward. In 2018, you sold more Mitsubishi PHEVs than any other Mitsubishi dealer partner in the country. How are you continuing to build on that success, even amid a global pandemic?
This ties back to the long-term vision that we adopted when we opened our business. We became an integral part of the community, and we focused on customer service. This helped us increase our customer base and allowed us to earn their loyalty. We used the momentum that we've built from our days as an independent used-car dealership and brought those customers with us to the Mitsubishi family. Our location in proximity to Silicon Valley allowed us to serve customers who are environmentally cautious, who fell in love with the Outlander PHEV when it was first released in the U.S. When the pandemic happened, we learned that we needed to shift our way of doing business by offering the customer all the tools they need to make a safe purchase. We announced a healthcare appreciation discount for health workers, we offered home delivery and remote buying options, and we prioritized customer safety.
About Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc.
Through a network of approximately 350 dealer partners across the United States, Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc. (MMNA), is responsible for the sales, research and development, marketing and customer service of Mitsubishi Motors vehicles in the U.S. 2019 marked the brand's seventh consecutive year of sales growth, and MMNA was the top-ranked Japanese brand in the J.D. Power 2020 Initial Quality Study, ranking sixth overall and experiencing the greatest year-over-year improvement of any brand.
Located in Franklin, Tennessee, MMNA is a part of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, the largest automaker alliance in the world. Mitsubishi continues to lead the way in the development of highly efficient, affordably priced new gasoline-powered automobiles, while using its industry-leading knowledge in battery-electric vehicles to develop future EV and PHEV models.
For more information on Mitsubishi vehicles, please contact the Mitsubishi Motors News Bureau at (615-257-2968) or visit media.mitsubishicars.com.
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