Although changing hands and names, New Floyd Road will still be home to a repair shop run by a passionate owner.
Cole Auto Repair Shop in Rome was originally owned by Malcolm Cole, who spent 41 years in the industry. Now the business is changing hands as 22-year-old Alex Van Dyke bought the property with the intention of continuing to run the business for a long time.
Van Dyke said one of the main reasons he bought the property from Cole was to keep the inspection station within the community. “It’s the only inspection station around that area a few kilometers away,” he said.
When asked why he wanted to pursue this profession, Van Dyke said he loved cars all his life – growing up around cars and fixing them. “I always wanted to pursue my love of cars and have a place to work in them, so it made sense. [to purchase the business],” he said. “Malcolm was here for 41 years. I hope to do 41 years here too.
The building, at 7765 New Floyd Road, was originally opened as a Texaco station in 1955, according to Alex’s father, Scott. The building was transferred to Cole around 1979 and still holds the Texaco red stars that adorned the original station.
The company will be renamed “Pegasus Motorcars”, which carries a special history with the family.
The Pegasus Custom Trans Am is special to Van Dyke because he is one of the few people in the world who can claim ownership of the car that Burt Reynolds used in his TV series “BL Stryker,” a crime drama that aired from the February 13. , 1989 to May 5, 1990. Three vehicles were used in the show, Scott said. One was an empty shell that was destroyed for the show, another used in filming, and one used for media appearances. The last one is the one Alex owns.
“[My father and I] jumped back and forth with names and if we use anything like our last name,” Van Dyke said. “[The Pegasus Custom Trans Am] is near and dear to our hearts, so we ran with the name.
And although the name has changed, Cole has worked closely with Van Dyke.
Along with leaving behind the old cash register and other trinkets, Van Dyke said Cole gave him his client list.
“I will reach out to [the clientele] soon and let them know that we are still here and that we will continue everything that Malcolm has done,” Van Dyke said. “We will continue to do inspections and help everyone.”
Besides inspections, Van Dyke said he would like to provide general maintenance for the vehicle, such as brakes, tires, oil changes and other small repairs that can be made.
The 22-year-old entrepreneur said he knew running a business would come with challenges during COVID, but felt confident in the future of Pegasus Motorcars.
Van Dyke said he was looking to hire a full-time mechanic as soon as he could open his doors. At the moment, renovations are needed on the property, so Van Dyke said he couldn’t give a specific time frame for when Pegasus Motor Cars will open.