Lentz USA Auto Service Centers were founded by Gordon Lentz on July 1, 1983. But even as Gordon watched the first Lentz USA Auto Service Center signs going up, he'd already been honing his successful business strategy for over ten years. Quality products at fair prices. Excellent customer service...Tempered with careful attention to business practices and costs.
Gordon Lentz was trained as a mechanical engineer. His first exposure to the automotive exhaust business came in the early 1970's, when he was selling storage systems, including tube racking products to muffler shops. He could see room for improvement in a lot of the shops he visited. He took a chance; quit his job, and invested his life savings in building his own shop. Gordon opened his first muffler shop as a Tuffy Muffler franchise in October, 1972 in Kalamazoo, Michigan.
That first harsh winter brought little business. By February of 1973, Gordon was out of cash. He took out a $3000 line of credit and prayed. "It was like somebody up there said, boy, if he's going to risk all that, let's give him a break." The next day was the busiest ever, and business started to improve that spring.
Over the next ten years Gordon and his wife Gloria slowly built a stable of four shops, watching the business grow as they applied Gordon's careful, consistent strategies. "I realized... that the key to success in this business was personnel. You are always going to have personnel problems to a certain extent. But if you start out with the right people, quality people; if you get them to understand why your way of business makes sense; if you teach them to generate not just sales volume growth, but profits growth -- then you are going to be all right."
Gordon's shops added new services before much of the rest of the industry, starting with brake work in 1974, and eventually including shocks and struts, converters and emission, front end, alignment, and oil changes at some locations.
Since hanging Lentz USA signs on those first four shops in 1983, Gordon has watched the chain grow to 32 shops in five states. And though Lentz USA pays close attention to the bottom line, to hiring and maintaining quality personnel, for 25 years the focus has remained the same:
"We believe the success of our business is a result of always trying to treat our customers as we would like to be treated."
Services & Products
The following products, sold and installed on non-commercial vehicles by LENTZ USA, are accompanied by a limited warranty. Please contact the store manager for more details.
Typical Store Hours:
Monday: 7:30am - 6:00pm
Tues-Fri: 7:30am - 6:00pm
Saturday: 7:30am - 3:00pm