Family Auto Service: where old is new again
Published - 07/23/14 - 02:36 PM | 14085 views | 0 0 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Heinz Gietz Autohaus is no longer – but its replacement, Family Auto Service, promises to continue handling European models while broadening its field to include all foreign and domestic vehicles.

Family Auto Service opened its doors with a host of guests July 10 during a ribbon-cutting ceremony held at the old Heinz Gietz building, at 1027 Virginia Way.

“Our employees and our clients are part of the family,” said district manager Rob Rowsell, explaining the origin of the new name of the company, which has two other branches, in East County. The facilities in La Mesa and rural Alpine have existed for 3 ½ and 11 years respectively.

Not to fear, said Rowsell to Gietz clients, promising: “We’ll still be doing Mercedes repairs.”

But all other vehicles are in the mix now too, said Rowsell.

“We do bumper-to-bumper, all makes, all models,” he said, adding the only kind of work not done at Family Auto is body work.

“We do windshields, belts, hoses, general maintenance, oil changes, timing belts, brakes and tires, engine overhauls and transmission replacements,” Rowsell said.

Rowsell said his clients are a mix of tourists and locals, old Heinz Gietz patrons and new clientele.

“People are very happy when they find out we do more than just Mercedes now,” he said noting many patrons have previously had to take their Hondas, Toyotas, Lexuses and Audis out of the Village to have them worked on.

“Now they can come here,” noted Rowsell, pointing to his sparkling-clean open customer service room, with its children’s area.

Why come to Family Auto Service?

“We have a three-year, 36,000-mile national warranty that recognizes more than 17,000 locations nationwide — the best warranty in the business,” answered Rowsell.

Family Auto Service in La Jolla is a fresh start for an expanding auto service. But for Rowsell, the company was a new beginning, a new life and a chance for redemption.

“Fifteen years ago, I was homeless and living on the street in Arizona,” he said. “Now, I’m a recovered crystal meth and crack cocaine addict. I walked into drug rehab and, through some hard work and faith in God, have gone beyond my wildest expectations to be a multi-business owner.”

Rowsell said he shares his story about his past because “everybody knows somebody who’s in a similar situation and appears to be hopeless. I was that guy. If I can change, anybody can.

“We’re very excited to be here,” said Rowsell of the new opportunities the Virginia Way location presents. What he’s bringing to La Jolla, Rowsell said, “is experienced and knowledgeable technicians and support staff who are all masters in their specialities.”

“Naturally, German and European is at the top of our list,” said Rowsell, adding that Family Auto also has top-of-the-line diagnostic equipment that allows technicians to do their job properly

Family Auto Service also offers concierge service to pick up and deliver cars as well as a convenient shuttle service to drop clients off and pick them up at their homes or offices.

For more information, call (858) 260-2000 or visit
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