Growing from just a few travel trailers to the second largest dealership in the state, Colman’s Country Campers in Hartford, Ill., not only offers a large selection of campers but now also sells pre-owned automobiles, the Alton Telegraph reported.
Founded in 1991, the business recently added this new line as a compliment to its core business.
“It’s a pretty good match for us,” Sales Manager Daecus Vance said. “We brought over Mark Lemons of Lem’s Motors in East Alton as of June 1.”
Vance said camper sales usually slow down during the winter months when pre-owned auto sales typically pick up.
“Mark has got a lot of experience in the auto business — in both sales and finance,” he said. “He has brought a wealth of knowledge with him that will help us.”
Colman’s Country Campers carries a wide range of Forest River Inc. RVs, including brands such as Cardinal, Flagstaff, Shamrock, Saber and Puma, along with Gulf Stream Coach’s Streamlite Sport.
“I’ve got everything from a popup to a luxury fifth-wheel that people can live in,” Vance said. “Our RVs sleep from two to 10 people, depending on the model.”
The line of pre-owned vehicles will give the Colman’s salespeople the opportunity to cross-train and extend their sales expertise.
“The vehicles we have on the lot don’t seem to be any particular make or brand,” Vance said. “We’ve got SUVs to pickup trucks to regular four door sedans — pretty much across the board.”
No building expansion was required to accommodate the additional vehicles.
“We have a large indoor facility and a lot of property here so we just needed to move the inventory around to fit the vehicles in,” he said. “The only thing we’ve done is add a small building for the cars to be detailed in — that’s all.”
The business’ motto is “where customers become friends” — this is a philosophy Vance feels will continue to serve them well as the business moves forward.