Longo Toyota, which bills itself as the world’s largest Toyota dealership, is going all in for education.

The El Monte, Calif., dealership is auctioning off a 2023 Toyota GR Corolla MORIZO, with all proceeds to be donated to the El Monte Schools and Vision To Learn.

The auction will take place virtually from Oct. 18-24, with the winning bidder to be announced Oct. 24. The dealership will match the final bid with a donation to the charities.

Toyota produced just 200 units of this limited-edition performance GR Corolla – badge number 001, as designated by Toyota, will be auctioned by Longo Toyota. The track-ready MORIZO edition features a 300-horsepower turbocharged 1.6-liter three-cylinder engine with extra torque for additional power.

The dealership is collaborating with digital auction platform Bring a Trailer to list the vehicle for auction. BaT will also donate its buyer fee to the charities following the auction.

The GR Corolla will be delivered cost-free to the winning bidder anywhere in the continental U.S. by car transportation technology platform RunBuggy.

“Longo Toyota has long been a proud supporter of our community and we are thrilled we can put 100% of the proceeds from the sale of this monumental vehicle back into the community to serve our students in El Monte,” Longo Toyota president and general manager Doug Eroh said. “We can’t wait to share more about the GR Corolla MORIZO Edition with automotive enthusiasts and showcase the power and performance behind this very limited edition vehicle.”

Funds allocated to El Monte City School District will help create STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math) labs and makerspaces at each of the district’s schools to provide students with experiential learning through hands-on activities focused on design, audiovisual components, coding and much more.

A portion of the funds donated to El Monte Union High School will go toward a transportation career technical education program that gives students hands-on automotive industry experience. That training includes vehicle diagnostic testing, brake system adjustments and electronic computer component testing.

“Educating students does not start or end in the classroom,” district superintendent Maribel Garcia said. “It takes a community to mentor young scholars and one of our goals is to cultivate relationships to provide the best opportunities for our students.

“With our Longo Toyota partnership and the proceeds from their auction, we can continue to empower our students to tap into their interests and showcase the importance of community support in local education.”

Additional proceeds will go toward supporting local efforts from Vision To Learn, a nonprofit organization that provides vision screenings, eye exams and glasses at no charge to students from low-income communities throughout the U.S.

For information about the auction, visit www.longotoyota.com/morizo-auction.html.

Car Pros Kia Huntington Beach opens newly renovated facility

Car Pros Kia Huntington Beach celebrated the completion of its $1 million facility renovation with a grand re-opening ceremony.

The ribbon-cutting ceremony honored the No. 1 Kia dealership in Orange County, Calif., for the past eight years. In attendance were Huntington Beach mayor Tony Strickland and chief of police Eric Parra, and Kia America vice president of sales operations Eric Watson, as well as members and ambassadors from the Huntington Beach Chamber of Commerce.

Ribbon cutting at the Car Pros Kia Huntington Beach grand re-opening ceremony. Photo courtesy of Car Pros Kia Huntington Beach.

“We are proud to have been part of the tight-knit community of Huntington Beach – affectionately known as Surf City USA – for the past decade,” Car Pros Automotive Group CEO Matthew Phillips said. “Our upgraded facility is designed to support and serve a community that we value so much with the highest standards of excellence in automotive retailing.

“Kia has become a powerhouse over the past few years and our stunning new facility is another example of the power of this consumer-friendly and deeply innovative brand.”

The newly remodeled dealership features Kia’s newest brand standards. Significant investments were made in its EV charging and repair infrastructure with the addition of two new high-speed level 3 EV chargers.

The dealership also features a large lounge and comfortable sitting area, a gourmet coffee station and wi-fi equipped customer workstations.

Car Pros opened Car Pros Kia Huntington Beach in 2010 as its dealership in California. It currently ranks among the top 35 Kia dealerships in the nation and is in the top five for Kia EV sales nationwide.

“We love being part of the Huntington Beach community. We’re here for all things Kia,” Car Pros Kia Huntington Beach general manager Bao Tran said. “We pride ourselves on the lasting relationships we have built with our customers and community, and are excited to welcome new and existing customers into our beautiful new dealership.”

Car Pros, founded in 1993 by the Phillips family, operates nine dealerships in Washington and Southern California, selling more than 2,500 cars per month with annual sales of $1 billion.

i.g. Burton acquires two dealerships in the Baltimore market

i.g. Burton Auto Group has entered the Baltimore market with the acquisition of Wilkins Subaru of Glen Burnie and Wilkins Buick GMC of Glen Burnie.

The addition of the dealerships in Glen Burnie, Md., gives i.g. Burton 12 locations in Maryland and Delaware. The group has been selling cars in the region for more than 115 years.

“We are excited to become part of the Baltimore community and look forward to serving the automotive needs of its residents,” i.g. Burton Auto Group owner and president Charlie Burton said. “This acquisition aligns perfectly with our mission to deliver unparalleled customer experiences and top-notch vehicles.

“We are confident our ‘Nobody Beats a Burton Deal, Nobody!’ motto will resonate well with Baltimore customers.”

The dealerships have been rebranded with the i.g. Burton name.