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Auto industry veteran takes over vacant Sears Auto Center in Macomb Mall – Macomb Daily

Auto industry veteran takes over vacant Sears Auto Center in Macomb Mall – Macomb Daily

Mike McInerney and his son Michael stand outside their new auto repair shop at the Macomb Mall in Roseville. (MITCH HOTTS — THE MACOMB DAILY)

Macomb County’s newest auto service center is located in a familiar location and operated by a legendary family in the automotive industry.

Mike McInerney, a Metro Detroit auto dealer who purchased the former Sears Auto Center at Macomb Mall in Roseville, recently held a grand opening ceremony for his McInerney Auto Center.

The 26,000-square-foot, 25-parking center on Masonic Boulevard in Gratiot has updated the shop with the latest technology, implemented environmentally friendly procedures and hired a team of fully certified technicians to service all makes of vehicles and commercial vehicles.

“In the business world, they say it’s location, location, location,” McInerney said. “Here in Roseville, what better location than a few steps from Interstates 94 and 696, and a few feet from Gratiot. This might be the best corner in town, maybe even in Macomb County.”

Tim DeLeo, a general service technology specialist, inspects the engine of a vehicle at McInerney Auto Center. (MITCH HOTTS -- THE MACOMB DAILY)
Tim DeLeo, who works as a general service technology specialist, inspects the engine of a vehicle at McInerney Auto Center. (MITCH HOTTS — THE MACOMB DAILY)

Mike McInerney comes from a “car family.”

He began his career at Oakland Dodge in Madison Heights and spent many years as general sales manager at Star Lincoln Mercury, owned by his uncle, the late Martin “Hoot” McInerney. Another uncle, along with his father Jack, started Northland Chrysler.

“It’s a family business, but it’s a tough business,” he said. “You have to experience it to learn it. It’s not something you read in a book.”

In 2016, McInerney left the auto industry to co-lead a technology startup with Compuware founder Peter Karmanos. Together, they developed a website platform called Deliver My Ride that offered online car shopping, giving him an idea of ​​how technology could impact the industry.

Despite the White House’s push toward electric vehicles, McInerney said there are still plenty of gas-powered vehicles. Many car owners are focused on repairing their vehicles rather than buying brand new ones, so opening a service center “made more sense,” he said.

McInerney Auto Center continues to add more technology and machinery to the former Sears Auto Center. (MITCH HOTTS -- THE MACOMB DAILY)
McInerney Auto Center continues to add more technology and machinery to the former Sears Auto Center. (MITCH HOTTS — THE MACOMB DAILY)

After viewing similar facilities in Lakeside and Oakland malls, he decided to open a location in the former Sears center, which had been closed for the past five years. He was impressed by its size.

“I wanted something substantial, not a small two-bay facility,” McInerney said. “And we have a monster bay in the back with a tall door where I can put six hoists or add personalization and auto detailing. We’re just getting started.”

After signing a lease in December, he and his son Michael immediately began collecting waste from the detention center.

To show his mechanics how much they mean to his company, McInerney is also setting up a fitness room in an empty space on the second floor.

Macomb Mall officials said they are happy to see the vacant auto center back in use.

“As our newest neighbor, we are thrilled to welcome McInerney Auto Center to the Roseville community and look forward to all they have to offer,” a mall spokesperson said.

The state-of-the-art, all-green operation features brand new hoists, alignment machines, lasers and camera technology — all recently purchased, making the facility completely modern. Everything from an oil change to air conditioning refills to wheel alignments and tire service can be arranged.

In addition, the mall is home to dozens of shops and refreshment outlets where car buyers can browse while waiting for their car to be repaired.

The new McInerney Auto Center continues to add technology and machinery. (MITCH HOTTS -- THE MACOMB DAILY)
The new McInerney Auto Center continues to add technology and machinery. (MITCH HOTTS — THE MACOMB DAILY)

“Our real advantage is our capacity,” McInerney said. “I can set aside six bays for customers who drive in and have another 20 bays for our commercial fleet customers. I can get these guys in and out the same day, so they can get on the road and make money.”

McInerney Auto Service is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. For more information, call 586-302-2622 or visit mcinerneyauto.com.