DETROIT— Sears Holdings Corp. has converted a pair of suburban Detroit-area Sears Auto Centers to the company's new DieHard Auto Centers format.
The re-openings — in Troy and Roseveille, Mich. — are just the second and third converted stores to reopen. Sears opened the first DieHard Auto Center in the San Antonio, Texas, area in February.
The Detroit-area openings, at Oakland Mall and Macomb Mall, respectively, coincide with the 50th anniversary of the launch of the DieHard brand, Sears said.
"The new DieHard Auto Center Driven by Sears is another example of how we are unleashing the power of the DieHard brand," said Jon Otterberg, president of Sears Automotive.
The freshly revamped Detroit-area centers are 17,000 square feet each are equipped with interactive in-store merchandise displays and advanced diagnostic technology.
Other features include:
- Digital Tire Journey: A web app that relies on IBM Watson Natural Language Classifier service to help customers identify the appropriate tires to fit their driving preferences. Customers can also use touchscreens in store to access the Digital Tire Journey.
- Free Wi-Fi: Enabling customers to be productive or entertained while their vehicle is serviced.
On hand from Sears corporate to cut the ribbon on the revamped stores were: Jon Otterberg, president and CFO, Sears Automotive; Marie Lafkiotes, chief marketing officer and senior director, strategy; and Patricia Langmaak, executive assistant to Mr. Otterberg.
Sears did not say how much the conversions cost, nor how soon or how many more conversions are in the planning.
There are more than 500 Sears Auto Center across the U.S. offering passenger and light truck tires and a range of maintenance and repair services and parts.