Missouri Hummer dealer freshens product line with guns

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Neal Rubin

Missouri Hummer dealer freshens product line with guns

Ruger, Smith & Wesson, Colt. Benelli, Bushmaster, Browning. FNH, H&K, CMMG, DPMS.

Long guns, handguns, whatever kind of guns strike your fancy, chances are you can find it in the bright, spacious showroom where HUMMER signs hang on the walls and a pistol might hang on the belt of your salesman.

GM is not happy with Lynch’s innovation. A Hummer spokesman told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that by contract, dealerships need to get company approval to open new businesses on their lots.

Lynch doesn’t seem concerned, however, about GM’s unhappiness.

He felt like GM cut him off at the axles when it dumped the H1, "the aspiration vehicle for tons of teenaged boys." Furthermore, most of what he knows about the potential sale comes from the newspapers; the only thing he’s heard from the mother ship is that it expects the purchase to go through in September. Given the natural connection between Hummers and the outdoors, it seemed wise to act first and worry about corporate feelings later.

Lynch’s mortgage holder doesn’t want to hear about GM’s prissy little regulations. But it likes knowing that he’s moved enough firearms — handguns and tactical rifles, mostly, with a surge in hunting rifles and shotguns expected for hunting season — to equal the profit from 15 SUVs.

A true Hummer fan

Lynch, 47, was the general manager of a Missouri Toyota dealership when he bought his first Hummer 15 years ago. He picked it up in Florida, and when he reached Atlanta on his trip home, he stopped and applied for a franchise.

"At first, I thought I was the only one goofy enough to want one of those big, ugly trucks," he says. "Then I found out it really was pretty good on the road, and I thought, ‘Maybe I’m not the only one.’"

His daily driver is a black 1997 H1 hardtop with 100,000 miles on it. "It’s been off-road most of its life and it’s still rolling along," he says. "You’d turn anything else to junk treating it like that."

He still loves the truck, and he still loves selling them. He has to admit, though, that with the current state of the brand, he’s better off pondering the addition of a shooting range than fretting over the sale of the company and possible changes to the products.

The excitement is in the firearms, and the priorities are reflected in his Web address,

As the saying goes, sort of, man does not live by Beretta alone.

 

www.gunsandhummers.com. But he’s still committed to the car dealership, even if he has only 14 new vehicles on the lot.

Long guns, handguns, whatever kind of guns strike your fancy, chances are you can find it in the bright, spacious showroom where HUMMER signs hang on the walls and a pistol might hang on the belt of your salesman.

Getting creative

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