Lithia Motors Acquires Armory Car Dealership
ALBANY, NY — One of the Capital Region's oldest car dealerships has been acquired by Lithia Motors, an Oregon-based automotive retailer.
Armory Garage on Central Avenue in Albany will keep its name and current leadership, the dealership said in a statement. Armory carries Chrysler, Dodge, Ram, Jeep and Fiat vehicles.
Founded by Anthony Metzner in 1918, the automotive business was originally located on Sherman Street in Albany at a time when cars were stored in the winter and people opted to use a horse and buggy instead.
In the 1920s, the business relocated to a five-story building on Central Avenue. The cars were displayed behind floor-to-ceiling windows on every floor, a then-novel approach to exhibiting vehicles. The dealership expanded after World War II and moved to a showroom at the corner of Colvin and Central avenues in 1949.
The showroom, which allowed Armory to display 200 cars in a 35,000-square-foot facility, helped earn the dealership recognition from Automotive News a decade ago as one of the most innovative car dealerships in the nation.
Anthony's son, Stanley Metzner, ran the dealership for more than 60 years. In 2015, his son Donald Metzner became CEO and the elder Metzner became CEO emeritus. He passed away in December.
"Much like Armory Garage, Lithia began as a family enterprise, deeply rooted in local communities," Armory said in a statement. "Lithia and Armory Garage express confidence that this transaction is an ideal blend of shared values and a strong culture of providing exceptional customer service."
With the acquisition of Armory, Lithia Motors now operates 168 stores in 18 states.