A long-standing Cumming car dealership has a new look.
Andean Chevrolet on Atlanta Road recently completed a total makeover of the building’s interior and exterior.
“We’re very excited about how it turned out,” owner Jim Otwell said. “It was ’98, ’99 when we remodeled the last.”
The dealership has been a part of Otwell’s family for more than 60 years.
“My father, James A. Otwell Jr., had it when it was Cumming Motor Company in the early ’40s,” Otwell said. “He went [to Alabama] to be a chemist and then came back to Cumming and bought it back in 1948.”
That’s when the elder Otwell named the dealership after his two daughters, Patricia Anne and Sarah Dean.
“I’m sure my dad would be impressed with this renovation,” Otwell said.
He added that the improvements continue in the dealership’s back service area, but upgrades have been completed throughout all other areas of the facility.
Employees had to work out of trailers for about three months as the building was gutted and completely made over.
Carol Neumann, customer care manager, said the upgrades included a complete remodel of Andean’s showroom.
“We used to have several vehicles in here, but now we only have one,” she said. “We wanted to make room for more sales staff.”
The new sales area, Neumann said, features many more desks for employees, as well as tile floors and fresh paint.
“It used to be an old blue color, now it’s a gray and much more modern,” she said.
Other improvements include a larger waiting area for customers leaving their vehicles for service and repairs.
The space features more seating and a large, flat-screen television, as well as a small area for children.
Otwell said there’s also a more comfortable area for customers to access Andean’s wireless Internet.
“We’ll have some taller desks for them to use,” he said. “It will make it a lot more easy for them to use the Wi-fi rather than having to hold their computers on their laps.”
Visitors will also find a café area, where they can get coffee, water and other snacks.
“We’ve added some tables and chairs in an outdoor area for warmer weather,” Neumann added.
The renovations have also included an expansion of a porch area across the front of the building and new offices.
The service customer counter has been expanded and the restrooms modernized.
Otwell said customers have been pleased with the changes.
“One gentleman bought cars with us in the ’70s and then again about four or five years ago,” he said. “He just kept saying he couldn’t believe how beautiful it was.”
While the dealership officially reopened in mid-August, Otwell said a grand reopening event will be held sometime in early November.
“Chevrolet’s 100th anniversary will also be in November, so we’ll probably do some things and have some promotions to tie into that,” he said.
Otwell said he is quite proud of the new look.
“We feel we have the nicest, most modern building in all of the Chevy dealerships in north Georgia now,” he said.