Meet Paul Licitra, CARSTAR Friendly of Roselle

Friendly Ford is thrilled to have Paul Licitra as a Body Shop Estimator for our CARSTAR Friendly of Roselle at the dealership. Paul has been with the company for some time and has really grown to be a passionate part of Friendly Ford’s family. We sat down with Paul to learn a little bit about his background, interests, and goals for the dealership.

 

Paul Licitra

Body Shop Estimator – Paul Lucitra

 

Please tell me a little bit of background information – some of your previous jobs, how you got into your current position at Friendly Ford which is Body Shop Estimator?

I was an electrician before I got into this industry. Always having a passion for cars, I am beyond lucky to have been granted an opportunity to get into this industry and I love it!

Have you always lived in the Roselle area?

I am actually not from this area. I grew up in River Grove Illinois and moved out to St. Charles, where I currently still am.

What are your current job responsibilities as Estimator? What is a typical day like for you?

I oversee the whole process of a customer’s vehicle. Starting when you call/come in after an accident. I go over your vehicle and put together an estimate of what it will cost to repair. I deal with insurance companies on a daily basis.  I make sure that when your vehicle is done that you not only leave happy, but that you leave with safe/quality repair.

What are your goals and what do you hope to accomplish at Friendly Ford as you move forward?

I hope to build the Body Shop big enough and strong enough to be able to expand to a second location.

What do you like most about your job and what makes you passionate about your line of work?

I love the challenge of estimating a variety of vehicles, because each and every vehicle is so different. We work on all makes and models and it is exciting because I never know what’s going to come in! What makes me so passionate is the end result and our customers leaving satisfied.

What would you consider to be your dream car?

Oh with out a doubt… Ford Raptor!

What are some of your hobbies outside of work?

Paul Licitra Snowboarding

Paul snowboarding

I love being outside.. R/C Cars & Boats, Biking, Boating, Snowboarding, taking my wife and 3 daughters on a walk to the park! I just love anything outdoors!

What are some fun or interesting facts about yourself?

I can always put a smile on someone’s face!

If someone made a movie about your life, who would you want to play you and why?

Robert DeNiro! His on screen charisma of being serious and funny at the same time. Plus I respect him as an actor

Now that you’ve gotten to know a little of Paul Lucitra, come by Friendly Ford today and give him a friendly hello! He’s always looking to brighten everyone’s day.

Meet Matt Yockey, Our Friendly Ford General Manager

Friendly Ford is thrilled that Matt Yockey has been promoted to the role of General Manager here at the dealership. Matt has been with the company for quite a while and all his hard work has definitely paid off. We sat down with Matt to learn a little bit about his background, interests, and goals for the dealership.

Are you from the Roselle, IL area?

I live in St. Charles, IL, which is about 25 minutes away. I was born and raised there.

How did you come to work at Friendly Ford?

Friendly Ford

Friendly Ford GM – Matt Yockey

In High School I got into a program where I could work for half of the day, and so, I went to Friendly Ford and I asked for a job. They started me off washing cars and sweeping floors. Soon after that I worked my way up to becoming a Lube Tech/ Mechanic. I liked it so much I decided to attend UTI (Universal Technical Institute) and graduate Ford FACT, which is basically becoming an authorized Ford Motor Company Technician. From there I became a Master Diesel Mechanic, Service Manager, and then finally became the GM of this great dealership and team.

What are your future goals for Friendly Ford?

I would really like to see Friendly Ford grow into a larger business. Right now, we are a “small fish in a big sea”, and I want to become the standard for building great relationships with customers and customer service itself in Roselle. We really care about our customers, and I want to show each one that we appreciate them stopping by to see us.

What are you most passionate about when it comes to your job?

I love the variety this job offers. Each day is different from the customers I help and employees I work with to the cars that come to our lot and service team. I cannot guess what my day will be like. There is never a dull moment, and I am excited for what the day will bring.

If you could have your dream car, what would it be?

That is a tough question! I have more than one. Can I just have them all? Half of me wants to go towards the supercar, the Ford GT. Everyone likes that. I also have a little part of me that wants an old Ford Mustang retrofitted to the new body style and engine, but the hillbilly part of me wants a monster, jacked diesel engine truck. In the end, I guess I don’t just have one. I have like six.

Outside of work, what do you do for fun?

Matt Yockey - Friendly Ford

Matt with his wife and daughter.

I love to boat and go boating, and wake surfing is a lot of fun. Other than that, snowmobiles and ATVs take up most of my time. I have a little girl now, so I end up hanging out with her and my wife a lot as well, which is amazing.

If they made a movie about your life, what famous actor would you like to play you?

The Rock! I love The Rock. He makes everything better and he’s a Ford guy!

Now that you’ve learned a little bit about Matt Yockey, stop by Friendly Ford today and say hello! Whether you’re looking to buy a vehicle or get it serviced, Matt will make sure you’re in good hands.

Watch Out for These Vehicle Warning Signs!

Dashboard Warning LightsKeeping track of your vehicle’s health can be as easy as looking at the dashboard, provided you know what each light stands for. While most drivers know the basics, like the battery and tires, other warning lights are less common. That’s where we come in. Here are some explanations of helpful vehicle warning signs you should know.

  • Airbag – Lighting upon initially starting the car, the airbag fault light depicts a large circle in front of a seatbelt-secured driver. While it normally turns off after a brief second, it might stay on and that’s when you need to be worried. If the light stays on, it means the system has found a problem with the airbag system. Take it to a service technician for repair right away.
  • Overdrive – Simply “O/D OFF,” this light indicates that someone in the car has turned off the overdrive system. To turn it back on, simply press the on/off button and worry no more.
  • ESP – A triangle with an exclamation point in the middle surrounded by an arrow, this light indicates there’s a problem with the traction control system. It’s designed to keep you on the road, so professional attention is highly recommended to fix the problem.

My Old Car—Should I Trade it In or Sell It?

vehicle salesWhen the time comes to get a new car, most people want to get rid of their old one. To do this, you have two choices: you can trade it in or sell it yourself. Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of each option to help you decide which is best for you.

Trading it in

When you trade in your car, the dealership will evaluate your car, look at all of its features, consider any damage and offer you a price. You can use that money and put it directly toward the purchase of your next car. This is by far the easiest way to rid yourself of your old set of wheels since there is very little you have to do.

Selling it yourself

If you want to sell your car yourself, this will take a lot more work. You will have to advertise your vehicle, determine how much you are willing to sell it for, keep it insured, and take time out of your day for test drives.

When you do a private-party sale of your car, you may end up getting more money for it, but after you consider the cost of keeping it insured, possibly paying for advertising, doing any necessary cleaning and repairs, and taking time for test drives, that financial benefit begins to wane.

In the end, if you are willing to take the time and effort required to sell your own car, then by all means, go for it. But, if you prefer a no-hassle approach, bring your old car in to Friendly Ford and we promise to give you a fair price for your car.

Tips and Tricks for Removing Car Scratches

vehicle detailUnfortunately, car scratches and dents tend to be an unavoidable part of car ownership. Whether someone else opened their car door into yours, your kid used your car as a resting spot for their sporting equipment, or you accidentally dried your car with a dirty towel, superficial scratches are likely to happen at some point. Here are some tips and tricks for removing car scratches.

First, determine what kind of scratch your car has endured. If your car is just scratched on the surface of the clear coat, you’ll be able to polish the scratch out with compound.  Using a kit found at automotive parts stores, you can easily buff out the area immediately surrounding the scratch. If you find that you’ve removed too much of the clear coat, you may have to reapply clear coat to even out the top layer (see below).

If your car’s scratch has penetrated through the clear coat to the base coat or primer, you’ll need to actually fill the scratch in with matching paint. Once you’ve added paint or primer to the scratch, let it sit overnight. Once it has cured, use 600- or 1000-grit wet-or-dry sandpaper to sand the area just until the new paint is flush with the rest of the car’s finish. Use compound to re-gloss the area. If you find you have low spots in the scratch, repeat the process until it is 100% smooth.

If you’ve sanded through or removed any clear coat, you’ll need to reapply clear coat. Buy automotive clear coat spray intended for spot repairs, and follow the direction to properly apply the clear coat to the affected area.

If your scratch is large, deep, or otherwise needs extra attention, contact us at Friendly Ford!

Dwayne Johnson and Ford Team Up to Promote Ford Service

In its newest marketing campaign, Ford has enlisted celebrity Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson to lead a series of commercials that will tout Ford Motor Company’s factory service professionals. In his role, the Fast and Furious star will lead a team of “Specialists” who are prepared to tackle any issue that may come up with your Ford vehicle.

service

Ford hasn’t released many details, but we do know that the Specialists are an elite crew of Ford technicians, trained and equipped to handle anything. We suspect the spots will offer a healthy amount of humor to highlight Ford’s superior service departments.

According to a recent news release, the Dwayne Johnson and Ford partnership stems from Johnson’s genuine love for the brand, having owned several Ford vehicles over the years.

Look for the ads to begin airing this week, along with other related content!

Here at Friendly Ford, we know you have a choice when it comes to servicing your vehicle. Stop by to meet our friendly, knowledgeable, and efficient staff, and see how we can meet your car’s needs!

What Does Oil Do?

oilRoutine maintenance on your vehicle is just that—routine. So it isn’t often you think about why something needs to be done. Some drivers simply follow their owner’s manual while others listen to the advice of friends and family. One important part of routine maintenance is changing the oil regularly. This is an extremely important part of owning a car, yet many owners aren’t sure what oil does. We at Friendly Ford are here to answer that question: just what does oil do?

Oil works in three ways to keep the engine operating smoothly. First, it helps keep the metal parts that are constantly mashing together lubricated to prevent any damage to the engine. It also carries away any dirt, grime, and metal shavings between parts.

Second, the engine is constantly setting off very small, contained explosions within its cylinders. That generates a lot of heat; oil helps to remove some of that heat and heat caused by friction between the moving parts.

Third, it keeps carbon and varnishes from building up in the engine. A very expensive engine cleaning is the only effective way to remove carbon and varnish build up. The worst that can happen if you don’t change your oil is your engine could seize up entirely. Trust us; that’s not a bill you want to pay!

Friendly Ford and Equine Dreams Partner Up for Custom Ride for “Teddy”

Equine Dreams

Meet “Teddy”

Nothing is cuter than pint-sized animals—and miniature horses are some of the cutest. Equine Dreams is a local non-profit organization that uses therapeutic horseback riding and miniature horse visits to help children and adults with physical, social, and other disabilities. Recently, Friendly Ford and Equine Dreams teamed up to provide a custom vehicle for one of its star miniature horses, Teddy.

To help Equine Dreams, Friendly Ford is modifying a Ford Excursion to transport Teddy along with other horses and animals. The Excursion will get a raised roof and turtle top so the animals will fit in the rear of the vehicle.

“This organization is near and dear to my heart,” said Friendly Ford co-owner Randy Yockey. “My sister, [Equine Dreams CEO] Sharon Mason, runs this organization [and] she has a handicapped child. We’re going to convert her Excursion that she daily drives and we’re going to make it a transporter for a mini horse.”

And, making the project even sweeter, Yockey’s neighbor Mike Gillespie is donating his time to modify the Excursion at Friendly Ford’s body shop.

You can follow along with the “Teddy’s New Ride” project on Friendly Ford’s Facebook page. If you’re interested in helping out Equine Dreams yourself, they are always accepting more volunteers or your can make a donation online.

Ford Fusion Sales Lead Brand to Good September Numbers

Ford Fusion Sales

2014 Ford Fusion

It’s been quite a year for the Ford Fusion, which just recorded its fifth straight month of record-breaking sales performance in September. The Fusion sold 29,452 vehicles in September alone, a huge percentage of the 137,297 vehicles sold in September for the brand overall. The Fusion wasn’t the only vehicle to perform well, though; the Explorer and Transit Connect also posted great numbers, making up for a lower volume in F-Series trucks while the new F-150 gets prepared.

“Fusion is selling strong, with five straight months of record performance and California driving more than 20 percent of our retail growth this year – more than any other state,” said John Felice, Ford Vice President, US Marketing, Sales and Service. “Lincoln produced its best sales results in seven years with the recent introduction of our all-new Lincoln MKC.”

Come see us at Friendly Ford to check out any of these awesome best-selling vehicles and to keep our streak of great sales going for the rest of 2014!

Millennial Car Shopping: The Young and Active Are Ditching Cars for Crossovers

Millennials are growing up. Gen Y (people born anytime from the early 80s through the early 2000s) are turning in their compact cars that got them through college and their first jobs, and upgrading to something bigger.

millennial car shopping

2015 Ford Explorer

Crossovers and SUVs are taking over this generation’s top car choice, and it makes sense. Sports, active lifestyles, adding pets, and even starting families make a roomier car an ideal choice. Millennials are looking for cars they can see themselves growing into the next phase of their lives in. An SUV is great for throwing their bikes in now, and loading their babies in later.

The older Millennials are about 32, and that means they are more often holding down stable jobs with higher incomes than the generation behind them. Purchasing a new SUV or crossover is not such a far reach for people falling into this category.

A study conducted by Maritz Research surveyed 122,000 participants and found that cars remain top choices for Millennials overall, but the percentage considering a small car has fallen from 13.2 percent in 2008 to 9.7 percent.

According to the data compiled by Maritz Research, Ford has climbed to the top of the list in sales consideration among millennials – meaning that regardless of whether or not Millennials actually have the means to buy a Ford, the automaker is their top choice over any other brand.

millennial car shopping

2014 Ford Flex

“The trend of millennials starting families comes at the same time Ford is updating or replacing nearly its entire product lineup,” said Amy Marentic, Ford global car and crossover marketing manager. “These fastest-growing segments – like small utilities – coincide with Ford’s product strengths.”

Friendly Ford has an entire lineup of best-selling crossovers and SUVs. The Escape, Explorer, and Edge are ideal cars for an active lifestyle.