New dealership open at former Royal Gate location

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Pictured is the lot at Columbia Chrysler Dodge Jeep RAM a few weeks ago. A banner that had “Columbia” on it hung over the old sign.

A new automotive dealership called Columbia Chrysler Dodge Jeep RAM is currently fully operating and open for business at the former home of Royal Gate Chrysler Dodge Jeep RAM in Columbia.

The business is owned by JW Clemens, who owns the property of both former Royal Gate properties but only owns this dealership.

Clemens was once a part owner of Royal Gate, but he was bought out in 2015, so there is no current affiliation between the former dealership and the current one.

“For JW, purchasing this dealership was much more than ‘just business,’ it was personal,” the dealership said in a statement. “Having grown up on a farm, understanding the value of hard work and community pride, Columbia Chrysler Dodge Jeep RAM was the perfect fit.”

Royal Gate was at the center of extensive speculation in August when all its vehicles were towed away and its sales department closed for a “facility issue.” The parts and service departments remained open.

Columbia Chrysler Dodge Jeep RAM said it was not certain why the previous owner sold the business, but Clemens thought it was a good opportunity for him to purchase it.

“As far as the past, we aren’t aware of why it was being sold,” the dealership said. “But as far as the future goes, we know where we are going to take it.”

The new dealership will have an official grand opening celebration Nov. 2, with plans for a monster truck, bounce house, giveaways, food and drinks.

Read more in next week’s Republic-Times.

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