Sorensen Celebrates 25 years in car sales

The year 2020 marks 25 years in business for Sorensen Auto Plaza in Shenandoah.

“When we started out, our original niche was cars under $5,000,” said Brad Sorensen, owner of Sorensen Auto Plaza. “We tried to provide affordable cars for people.”

Sorensen said the business has grown over the years with their customers.

“Things evolved, and it grew into financing,” said Sorensen. “As repeat customers wanted nicer, newer cars we grew with our customers. Today it’s more accurate to say that we sell cars under $20,000. We’d like to think that we’ve grown up with our customers and we’re thankful for the support we’ve had from the community.”

Sorensen Auto Plaza leads the way in the buy-here-pay-here industry with their financing options and power train warranty.

“We offer 18 months, 18,000-mile power train warranty on everything we sell,” said Sorensen.

Sorensen said if anything goes wrong with a car purchased from Sorensen Auto Plaza during the warranty period, it will be taken care of in house.

Kristin Acosta, General Manager, said most traditional buy-here-pay-here dealerships have set down payments and interest rates regardless of how many times a customer has purchased from them.

“We value our good returning customers,” said Acosta. “So we have strayed from the set interest and down payments, and now offer our good, returning customers zero down options and interest as low as 6.5%. We take pride and value in our repeat buyers.”

Harbin said this is something you won’t find at other buy-here-pay-here dealerships.

Harbin said Sorensen Auto Plaza offers its customers personalized service.

“We’re understanding with our customers’ needs and take the time to see what is going to fit best,” said Acosta. “We know our customers personally. They get peace of mind that they are not going to get at almost any other dealership.”

Sorensen Auto Plaza provides quick, simple, easy financing and automatic payment option.

“We say yes when other lenders say no,” said Sorensen. “We do our best to provide the customer the car they want.”

Sorensen Auto Plaza also has rental cars available.

Sorensen considers himself mostly retired. He said he still purchases inventory and attends car auctions when he can and leaves the day to day operations to Acosta and her team.

Acosta has been with Sorensen Auto Plaza since 2012. The rest of the Sorensen Auto Plaza team consists of Erica Matya, Sales and Marketing; Hayleigh Connell, Finance; Kathy Silvestre, shop supervisor; John Nenneman, Justin Hammers and Danny Edie shop employees.

Sorensen grew up in his father’s gasoline station changing tires and oil.

“I attended Iowa Western College and graduated from their trade school program as an auto mechanic,” said Sorensen. “Automobiles have literally been a lifestyle for me.”

Sorensen said it is gratifying to serve customers in the automobile industry and now entering retirement knows the business is in good hands in his absence.

“We’re especially thankful that our customers continue to support us into the next generation,” said Sorensen.

Matya said a vehicle would be highlighted each week as a silver deal special throughout 2020 to celebrate their 25 year silver anniversary. Customers would also receive an extra $25 for referrals all year.

Sorensen Auto Plaza is located at 1100 W. Sheridan Ave., Shenandoah. You can also find them at or on Facebook.

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