The latest in the expanding market of automotive dealerships in downtown Bethesda is a new Koons Lincoln of Bethesda, where work is underway in the Bethesda Crossing building at 7315 Wisconsin Avenue. Once open, that will bring the grand total of new and used car dealerships in downtown to at least nine.
With up to 20% vacancy rates in commercial properties in Bethesda and many retailers closing under the pressure of pandemic-related problems, Montgomery County published a Request For Proposals (RFP) to bring additional dealerships into the area. County spokesperson Coris Ponder explained, “Now is a prime time for car dealerships to take up prime real estate in a previously underserved market. Downtown Bethesda can be so much more than Wonderfully Walkable – it can be Delightfully Driveable too!”
“It’s time for Bentley and Lotus to come back to Bethesda!” The RFP offered escalating rent abatement, starting with $5/sqft for pedestrian Mazda and Hyundai dealerships, $10/sqft for luxury brands such as Land Rover and BMW, and a premium $20/sqft for the likes of Aston Martin, Ferrari, and Lamborghini. “Sure some of these dealerships are just up the Pike in Rockville, but if the Choice headquarters relocation is any indication, then many must be willing to move a mere 3 miles down the street to greener pastures.”
When asked about the possibility of a popular Tesla showroom in downtown Bethesda, Tesla CEO Elon Musk responded via Tweet, “Doesn’t every Bethesdan already own a Tesla? And I thought we already had a Tesla showroom in Bethesda?” Tesla does technically have a showroom in Bethesda, located inside Montgomery Mall at 7101 Democracy Boulevard, Bethesda, MD 20817.