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A Waynesville car dealer has bought the Egolf Chrysler dealership in Hendersonville.
Van Olp, who owns auto dealerships in Waynesville and Miami, will keep the Chrysler Dodge Jeep and Ram dealership here in the same location, Jeff Egolf said in a news release. The sale closed today, the 41st anniversary of the Egolfs' dealership in Hendersonville.
"Van will be operating the Chrysler Dodge Jeep and Ram franchises under Hendersonville Automotive Group at the same location on Duncan Hill Road," Egolf said in a news release.
Jay Egolf will continues as dealer principal of Egolf Ford and Egolf Chrysler in Brevard.
"Dad was retiring and I wanted to continue and it was just too much for me to run both," he said. "This was pretty much Dad's dealership anyway and he was retiring. We called Chrysler at the factory — Dad has a lot of contacts there — and told them we were thinking about selling the store, and we wanted to maintain the reputation we had and treat people OK, and within a few hours, the next day, Van got in touch with us. We were looking for somebody like Van."
As the owner of the Brevard store, "If somebody likes the Chrysler product and they want to deal with us we can still honor that," he said. "My dad will have an office but obviously I'll be handling the day to day operations."
The senior Egolf offered thanks for four decades of support.
"Personally, I want to thank customers, friends and residents of Henderson County and Hendersonville for support and friendship for the 41 years," Jeff Egolf said. "Our dealership personnel, my family and I myself feel a real part of the community and I wish to emphasize that will not change. I will continue in my retirement to be active and supportive in the various community activities that have been my pleasure to serve."
His son, Jay, will continue to operate the Ford and Chrysler dealerships in Brevard — "and who knows, you may even bump into me over there," he added.
Egolf wished Olp and his employees, "the same wonderful loyal and dedicated employees that have served Egolf over the years, the best luck in the future."
In October 2011, Olp bought the Anderson Chrysler and Anton Ford dealerships in Waynesville from Fred Anderson.
Olp had managed dealerships in Miami and Atlanta before moving with his family to the N.C. mountains, in part so his 10-year-old daughter could compete in a top-rated gymnastic program, according to a company statement.