Posts Tagged ‘Ford’


Just a couple weeks after Buerge Jeep-Chrysler-Dodge-Ram closed forever, the other Buerge enterprise, Buerge Ford at 11800 Santa Monica Blvd in West LA, also shuttered.

The sad sack building and nearly empty parking lot tell a story.

The sad sack building and nearly empty parking lot tell the story.

Unfortunately, it comes as no surprise that both dealerships tanked. The clueless management and hapless sales staff  - hallmarks of the Chrysler store – were only marginally better at the Ford store.

I shopped at Buerge Ford a few times over the years and I always came away with the feeling that the salesman seemed depressed and resigned to losing a sale. The test drive inevitably consisted of a short, four-right-turn-course, with busy Santa Monica Blvd as the “rewarding” home stretch. This kind of useless short route is all too typical of dealer test drive routes in L.A.

The physical facility always looked dated and in need of attention. Whether it was a leaky roof or just the cramped showroom, the whole place should have been torn down and replaced years ago. I assumed that there just wasn’t enough money to do any upgrades.  These days, owning only two small dealerships isn’t enough mass to compete with the large dealer groups that dominate the LA market. The tiny physical footprint occupied by Buerge Ford also made any major expansion a challenge. And any hint of large-scale development is met with opposition from well-financed NIMBY neighborhood groups.

There didn't seem to be any hurry to dismantle the service bays, but all of tools and equipment was being moved out.

There didn’t seem to be any hurry to dismantle the service bays.

The only difference from closing the Chrysler store is a referral to another dealer.  Big banners at Buerge Ford point bewildered customers to Airport Marina Ford at 5880 W. Centinela Ave, not far from LAX.  For many, that’s just too far out of their daily orbit. Santa Monica Ford will likely pick up most of the business.

Buerge Ford Customers are referred to Airport Marina Ford near LAX.

Buerge Ford Customers are referred to Airport Marina Ford near LAX.

Interestingly, a few remaining cars were marked to go to different Ford dealerships. This pathetic-looking Fiesta was marked to go to Santa Monica Ford. I wonder how much longer it sat before it was driven a couple miles west to its new home.

This Fiesta was tagged to go to Santa Monica Ford. The thick layer of dust and wilted paper tag are a clue that the car has been sitting like this for at least a week or two.

This Fiesta was tagged to go to Santa Monica Ford. The thick layer of dust and wilted paper tag are a clue that the car has been sitting like this for at least a week or two.

Both Chrysler (including Jeep, Dodge and Ram Trucks) and Ford have numerous blockbuster models including the Ford F-150 pickup truck and the Jeep Grand Cherokee.  There should be a very strong market in wealthy West LA for both brands.  At least for Ford customers, there are two stores (Santa Monica and Airport Marina) in the same area 310 code.  No such luck yet for us Chrysler Group owners (I own a Dodge Charger).

I found parts of the Buerge Motor Car Company website were still active.  Here’s the Buerge story:

Buerge Ford is one of the longest continually active Ford franchises in California and the United States.

We trace our roots back to 1915 in Westwood.  Buerge Ford has been selling cars and trucks, servicing cars and trucks, and selling parts for cars and trucks for over ninety-three (93) years! On top of that we are on Route 66 – the “mother road” of the West! Located just under a mile from the 405 Freeway at 11800 Santa Monica Boulevard. Buerge Ford and Buerge Chrysler Jeep are family run local businesses that have sold and serviced new Ford, Chrysler, and Jeep cars and trucks for decades. We’ve got grandfathers and grandmothers, fathers and mothers, who bring their children and grandchildren in for their first new car or truck. We have families and friends who have purchased cars here for generations.

We offer superior service and extraordinary deals for all automotive needs and transactions. As an example, Blue Oval is the Ford Motor Company’s exclusive measuring tool to seek out and reward the best of the best – the best Ford and Lincoln Mercury dealers in America and California. (Like the J. D. Power Awards). Buerge Ford has been Blue Oval Certified every year this customer satisfaction program has existed.

In the internet age, I’m not sure that being “Blue Oval Certified” means much. I don’t know anyone who has a “personal relationship” with a dealer or car salesperson. You’re more likely to have a business relationship with the service department than sales. For most, going to a car dealer for anything has all the appeal of a stint in a dentist’s chair. The only silver lining for the Buerge family is that the real estate – two full blocks in West LA –  is probably worth a small fortune.

Buerge Ford lasted for 99 years. It’s a shame it didn’t make it to 100 in 2015.

2013 Los Angeles Auto Show Day One #LAAutoShow

Posted: November 20, 2013 in Acura, Alfa Romeo, Aston Martin, Automobile Manufacturers, Bentley, BMW, Cadillac, Car Shows, Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Ford, Infiniti, Jaguar, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), Jeep, Lamborghini, Land Rover, Lexus, Lincoln, Los Angeles Specific Issues, Maserati, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Ram, Range Rover, Volkswagen, Volvo
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The Campagna T-Rex. These three-wheeled wonders are from Canada and are very expensive - $60 - 70,000. I have it direct from an owner that they are fun beyond belief. Nice toy if you can afford one!

The Campagna T-Rex. These three-wheeled wonders are from Canada and are very expensive – $60 – 70,000. I have it direct from an owner that they are fun beyond belief. Nice toy if you can afford one!

LAAutoShow Day 1 005 Porsche 911 Turbo S Rear

All new, if you can afford it, is the Porsche 911 Turbo and Turbo S. Available in both coupe and cabriolet form. When you choose options, it’s usually in $10,000 increments.

LAAutoShow Day 1 006 Porsche 911 Turbo S int

The interior of the Porsche 911 Turbo S Cabriolet. Red leather is my favorite interior for just about any sports car.

LAAutoShow Day 1 007 Porsche 911 Turbo Cabriolet

This is the “lesser” 911 Turbo Cabriolet. It’s missing the S, but I’d still love it and give it shelter.

LAAutoShow Day 1 013 Porsche 918 Spyder rear

This is the production Porsche 918 Spyder. There is NO BAD ANGLE on this fantastic super hybrid.

LAAutoShow Day 1 014 Porsche 918 Spyder Int

The interior of Porsche’s 918 Spyder Hybrid is just as futuristic as the exterior. I’m sure Jay Leno already has one.

LAAutoShow Day 1 016 Lincoln MKC front

This is the all-new Lincoln MKC (C for crossover, compact). It’s based on the Ford Edge, but with lots of upgrades and changes. It’s not just a badge-engineering job. I think it’s handsome and will find some traction in the very big compact SUV/CUV market.

LAAutoShow Day 1 017 Lincoln MKC rear

The rear doesn’t work as well for me. The MKC kind of has a fat ass and the “signature” taillights that sweep across the whole rear just make it look larger.

LAAutoShow Day 1 022 Lincoln MKC int

The interior of the Lincoln MKC is more successful. With a combination of MyLincoln Touch and physical buttons and knobs, this is the direction Ford and Lincoln are taking to try and appease pissed-off consumers who hate the touch controls.

LAAutoShow Day 1 024 Ford Transit Connect Titanium Wagon Cross Country by LGE CTS Motorsports (2014)

I think the new 2014 Ford Transit Connect family of wagons and utility vans will find many new customers as it comes in different sizes with much more car-like interiors.

LAAutoShow Day 1 029 Ford Edge Concept front

This Ford Edge Concept is very close to the upcoming production 2015 Edge Crossover. I like the bold look.

LAAutoShow Day 1 030 Ford Edge Concept

That’s quite the in-your-face grille, isn’t it? The 2015 Ford Edge Concept

LAAutoShow Day 1 031 2014 Ford Focus ST

The lighting just doesn’t do justice to this neon yellow 2014 Ford Focus ST. It’s really quite arresting – and you might get arrested driving far too fast in it.

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