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Time Moves On and So Do Famous Car Dealers
From:
Jim Ciardella ---  Ferrari Writer Jim Ciardella --- Ferrari Writer
For Immediate Release:
Dateline: Los Gatos , CA
Wednesday, September 25, 2019

 

The corner of East Main and Pageant Way in Los Gatos, California has been home to an automobile dealership since the 1920s when Spotswood Dodge moved in. Ferrari of Los Gatos occupied the space from the mid-70s through the mid-90s, followed by Silicon Valley Auto Group, and Los Gatos Luxury Cars.

66 East Main Street back in the day

Mike Gulett and his wife drove down East Main Street a couple years ago and this is a reprint of an article he posted at that time.

The building that once housed Ferrari of Los Gatos has been vacant since Los Gatos Luxury Cars moved out in 2014. The famous corner housed exotic car dealers for 88 years, with Ferrari of Los Gatos located there for 20-years. The Ferrari dealership sold many new and used Ferraris back in the day, maybe more than any other dealer in North America, but suffered from troubles over the years (both legal and business).

The troubles included bankruptcy, criminal charges, and the loss of the Ferrari Dealership. Things certainly changed after Enzo died. The new Ferrari management decided they wanted to convert several dealerships to company stores. The Ferrari sign came down, the dealership turned to luxury cars, and the Ferrari dealership eventually moved to Redwood City.

The Empty Building Can Shock You

When my wife and I drove through Los Gatos a couple of years ago, we were surprised to see the empty site as shown in the photo below.

Ferrari of Los Gatos Building

We lived near this dealership for many years and bought and sold a few cars there. Ferrari of Los Gatos was a fun place to visit on a Saturday afternoon because many other car lovers would stop by, and there was always the opportunity to take out a cool car for a test drive.

It is sad to see an institution close down, but as Bob Dylan said, “The times they are a-changin.”

This article was first published by Mike Gulett at CarQuest.com and is reposted here with permission.

2019 Update. Recently, a fitness center located down the street called The Club of Los Gatos has rented 66 East Main Street. It will be the first non-automobile business to occupy the space since 1926.

Mike received a couple of license plate frames from an ex-Ferrari of Los Gatos employee when the dealership closed down. They’re considered collectibles today.

Did you ever visit a dealership at 66 E Main Street? Please share the story here, or leave a comment below.

Photo:  Personal Photo / Jim Ciardella

About the Blog

The blog FLGstory.com tells how two young men had a dream to sell Ferraris. In 1976, Richard Rivoir and Brian Burnett's dream turned into a Silicon Valley business that became the best-known Ferrari dealership in the world. It's the story of Ferrari of Los Gatos and corresponds with a book that is a work in progress. 

About the Author 

Jim Ciardella is a storyteller, Ferrari enthusiast, and native Californian. Born and raised in Palo Alto, he grew up in the heart of Silicon Valley and witnessed the dot.com boom and the changes it created.

At one point, he met Brian Burnett, co-owner of Ferrari of Los Gatos. Over the years, Brian told Jim numerous stories about Ferrari of Los Gatos and finished each tale with these words: “And someone ought to write a book about it.”

One night, after many stories and Brian’s predictable conclusion, Jim told him, “I’ll do it. I’ll write the book.”

When he isn’t writing to tell a story, Jim, a finance executive, helps technology companies. He started his career in public accounting and soon realized that growing and improving businesses was his calling. And there was no better place to fulfill that calling than Silicon Valley, the land of startups and successful hi-tech firms.

Writing played a big part in all of Jim’s business experiences and is his real passion. Jim believes, “The written word weaves memories into an amazing story.”

 
Jim Ciardella LLC
Morgan Hill, CA
(669) 258-5107