Edmonds Automotive’s new owner promises to keep the vibe alive

New owner Greg Wright promises to keep the heart and soul of the much-loved repair shop while upgrading the tools and equipment to meet the needs of today’s increasingly complex automobiles.

Edmonds Automotive — a downtown fixture with an extremely loyal customer base — now has a new owner who pledges to maintain the soul of the much-loved auto repair shop.

“I want to be part of the community and maintain the special charm that brings folks into Edmonds Automotive – and keeps them coming back,” said Greg Wright, who recently purchased the business at 218 3rd Ave. N..

The windows are papered over and the lot is empty as renovations begin at Edmonds Automotive.

Edmonds Automotive’s  roots go back to 1946, when the original shop opened in the Westgate neighborhood. In 1968, it moved to its present location, at which time a talented young mechanic named Chuck Verrall was part of the team. In 1989, Verrall bought the business, and his son Charles “Chaz” Verrall started working there too. Eleven years later, Chuck retired and sold the business to Chaz, who from the outset put the focus on building solid customer – and employee – satisfaction and loyalty.

And according to long-time customer Doug Lofstrom, that formula works.

“It’s been 34 years since I first started doing business with Chaz and the gang at Edmonds Automotive,” Lofstrom said. “I was in there recently for something or other regarding one of my cars when Chaz reminded me of times he worked on a beat-up old Ford pickup of mine. I can barely remember owning the truck — I got rid of it 30 years ago! But he remembered the details of the truck and what he did to it. Wow!”

Chaz Verrall speaking to the Rotary Club of Edmonds in 2015. (Photo courtesy Carol Kinney)

In a 2015 presentation to the Rotary Club of Edmonds, Chaz explained: “I love coming to work, and I want to make sure we are all having a good time.  If you’re not careful, business can turn into work and that’s not fun. It’s not all about commerce – it’s about having a good time.”

Along with keeping the charm and building on Chaz’s philosophy, Wright plans to bring in new skill sets and modern tools to service the increasingly complex automobiles on the road today.

“This involves some major renovations and will take some time,” he explained.  “We’re looking to reopen later this year, but with everything we’re doing we don’t have an exact date yet.  So stay tuned!”

— Story and photos by Larry Vogel

  1. We have been patronizing Edmonds Automotive for over 35 years, and loved working with the crew there. Honest, friendly, professional service. We’re going to miss you, Chaz!

    1. We were so sad to hear that Chaz left without saying goodbye! It was like being taken care of by a family member and Edmonds will certainly miss his way of doing business! I hope he is off to a grand new adventure!

  2. Chaz and the group have been terrific to work with. It’s been our “go-to” car care shop for 40+ years. We wish them the best as they move on, and we look forward to meeting the new crew and introducing them to our cars. Thanks to Chaz for his many years of dedication.

  3. Meryl Rogers was the original owner of Edmonds Automotive. He was a great guy and good friend.

  4. Oh Chaz. Congratulations and we will miss you. Our cars will miss you. And, we wish you success in the future. We’re sure Edmonds Automotive will remain the place to go for great service, good prices and wonderful friendship. Thank you so very much for years of all three. Our very best to you all.

  5. Congratulations, Chaz (and your stalwart squad), for cementing a legacy that Meryl began with his heart and soul, and your wonderful Dad, Chuck, transitioned with class into the foreign car market. You carried it to even greater heights. Hard work, honesty, and genuine helpfulness ALWAYS prevailed. You were the kingpin of Edmonds’ Click and Clack crew. Thank you for a glowing realm.

  6. Chaz not only kept my vehicles running. He also helped out a local ski club when their van broke down, and took it in immediately so the coach could pick up the kids. He even helped me with a reference to a prosthesis when I was having bad leg issues. Another time when my Volvo wouldn’t start, he walked over to where we were and got it running almost at once – no charge.

    Wonderful guy, wonderful shop and service. He will be sorely missed! (Hope he gets in some ski time and dusts off those old 220’s – once a ski bum, always a ski bum!)

  7. Simply the best automotive service I have ever encountered. Greg has HIGH STANDARDS to meet.

  8. TRUST is the key word. In addition to regular care and repair of our vehicles, you kept an elderly pick-up going without expensive repairs and helped us dodge a financial bullet — a huge unnecessary repair — proposed by a local car agency. We’ll continue with Edmonds Automotive! bob

  9. Thank you so much for your years of excellent service and dedication to your community, Chaz. You and your staff were always exceptionally friendly, gracious, and your work was always top rate. Edmond Automotive was an institution, and it was iconic, and it can never be replaced. Cheers to you and your staff, and best wishes going forward. Warmest regards.

  10. I am happy for you Chaz, but will feel absolutely lost without your excellent service full of honesty, integrity, and just truly caring for each car and their owners. My Honda loves you…..so am praying I can receive the same loyal and caring service I have come to love and need……been coming to Edmonds Automotive for 28 years, shortly after my husband passed very suddenly. ….thank you Chaz for your caring and capable service….. I am there to stay!

  11. We too will missChaz. Always helpful and honest. Hope some of
    his crew will be back too. Thanks for your service to our cars. Bill and Judy Baker

  12. I still cannot believe Edmonds Automotive is changing owners. Chaz was and is the rock star on classic cars. I always taken my 1970 Thunderbird to their shop, and Chaz had saved me thousands of dollars with his knowledge and common sense. We wish him the best with his next adventure. We will be trying the new owner when the time comes, and hope they can continue to service our car.

  13. My whole extended family is going to miss Chaz & the boys!!! The Veralls have been long time family friends when Alderwood Manor didn’t have a mall.
    His automotive business was thee place to go for reliable work and super honest opinions. The phrase “better ask Chaz” circulated a lot. The integrity of him and the business was incredible and a very rare trait in today’s business world.
    We’re wishing him all the best in his next endeavor.

  14. I was so impressed when I brought my car in for a checkup and oil change. They fixed a few things, but didn’t try to upsell anything. No, I didn’t need a tappet adjustment or valve job or rings or this or that fluid or that confounded whatchamacallit. At the same time, I heard that all the Gregg’s repair shops have been bought up by a larger company from California. (Maybe MEN could look into that). I’m not against such things per se, but it seems to me sometimes the less local something is, the less accountable. Look what happened to Bartells.

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