Nestled in the banks on the south side of the Ohio River, the George Rogers Clark memorial bridge links downtown Louisville, Kentucky to its neighbors in Indiana. The city was established in the early 1800s, the Louisville Slugger bat became wildly popular, and Aristides was the winning horse in the first Kentucky Derby. After a massive flood submerged 70% of the city in 1937, brothers Morris and Orville Brown established West Broadway Motors downtown to serve the region. Later, it became Brown Brothers Cadillac.
Just a few days ago, the community was stunned by an announcement on Brown Brothers Cadillac’s Facebook page: after more than seven decades, this historic dealership is closing its doors.
“We regret to announce our last day of operation as a Cadillac dealership will be February 15, 2021. We would like to thank our loyal customers and employees for their support for over 75 years,” Brown Bros. Cadillac wrote in a post on Facebook.
Looking more like a well-appointed luxury home on the inside than a dealership, Brown Brothers Cadillac had been a Cadillac Hall of Fame Master Dealer since 1989. That designates the company’s status as a sales leader in the area as well as customer satisfaction, and a quick perusal of Yelp and Google reviews shows they were well-regarded. The dealership has not announced a reason for closure, but a slow economy in Kentucky could be a factor. Or perhaps, as we reported in November, they took a buyout GM offered to dealerships that didn’t care to sell EVs. So far, Brown Brothers Cadillac is not saying.
Dealerships all over the country have had to reckon with their futures in the last several months as the pandemic has changed the business model. On Friday, Reuters reported a retail decline that is struggling to right itself, but auto buyers are showing resiliency and the market is looking up. Sounds like this local company is going to be missed in Louisville, and from the looks it, any of us would be hard-pressed to find another dealership as pretty as that one is on the inside.