In 1960, the Agency purchased by father, Dave Dralle Sr., from Meier Bros. was at that time located in downtown Watseka where the business rapidly expanded from selling 10 cars a year to over 400 cars per year. By 1963 room ran out downtown and 5 acres were purchased on Rt. 50 (Governors Highway). Grandfather, Ed Dralle owned the John Deere dealership in 1/3 of the building and the auto dealership ran in the other 2/3.
By 1975 the car business had grown to where it could no longer house both dealerships in one location. So Dave Dralle Sr. sold his share of the John Deere dealership and took over full operation of the auto dealership.
Dave Dralle Sr. was also an active farmer while working at the John Deere and Dralle Chevrolet dealership. He first taught his sons the work ethic on the farm through 4H, FFA and their own projects. Dave Dralle Sr. grew the business by treating his employees well and by putting the customer first. While many dealerships had difficulty retaining sales people, Dralle's sales people stayed year-in and year-out.
In 1973 Dave Dralle Jr. and Greg joined the business full-time, with Greg working in the Service Department and Dave Dralle Jr. in the Sales Department.
In 1981 Dave Sr. moved to beautiful South Carolina anda started farming there. In 1982, Greg and Dave Jr. purchased full ownership of the dealership to become 50/50 partners.
Also, in 1982 the dealership went through a major renovation by upgrading the interior and exterior of the building, going from a 5-car showroom to a 9-car showroom.
Throughout the next 10 years, sales more than doubled and Dralle's received many sales leadership awards. Being #1 in car and truck sales in their market area throughout the state for Buick, Dralle's was always in the top 3 for dealerships.
With sales and sales effectiveness, Dralle's in ranked #1 in the Chicago area for customer satisfaction ahead of all the other dealers. In 1991, Dralle's purchased the Chevrolet, Oldsmobile, Cadillac dealership in Watseka. At that time brother Joh Dralle went to the Watseka location to run that dealership.
In 1997, a 10,000 sq. ft. addition was added in Watseka. This addition included a 2-bay Quick Lube, fully automated car wash, 2-lane service drive. This brought the dealership up to General Motors Project 2000 specifications. The dealership improvements made them even more customer friendly. After any service, the customer vehicle is washed & vacuumed.
In 1998, Greg and Dave Jr. purchased O.C. Schreffler in Watseka. After purchasing it, the location was renovated to be brought up to GM Project 2000 specifications. Within a years's time, this quadrupled the car sales there. This same year in Watseka, Greg and Dave Jr. went into partnership with their brother John to purchase the Buick, Pontiac, GMC dealership in Watseka and moved it to the Chevy, Olds, Cadillac location.
Because of the growth in Watseka, 10 acres was purchased just south of the John Deere store for a new location to be built several years from now.
We credit our success to the upbringing our parents gave us. They taught us to work hard, work as a team, and to treat people the way we would like to be treated. Because of this, we've had the best employees, which have given us the opportunity to meet and work with thousands of great loyal customers.
The folks at Dralle's appreciate their customers so much that they hold two Customer Appreciation Days - The last Saturday of July (Hog Roast) and the 2nd Thursday of November (Thanksgiving Dinner). Please visit our "events" page for Dralle and River Valley specials events.
We would like to thank all customers for over 40 years of loyal support. We will be there 40 more years to serve you.