About Greymouth Car Centre
Since 1983 Greymouth Car centre has built an outstanding reputation as a stable and trustworthy business on the West Coast.
We are determined to offer competitive deals and good cars to all our customers.
Day to day running of the car yard is handled by Phil Campbell (Manager) and Lee Harrington (admin). Chris Baird runs the workshop assisted by Wayne Hume and Dave Lowe, while Bronwyn Wafer is our Car Groomer. Lynne Kokshoorn assists in our Office.
Greymouth Car Centres two major shareholders are local businessmen and brothers Tony (former Grey District Mayor) and Dave Kokshoorn.
Tony and Dave are both committed to the West Coast region and the benefits of having local businesses that offer products that can’t just be purchased in larger cities.
From paint shop to largest Coast dealership
Originally established as a car painting business by Tony and David Kokshoorn in 1975, the Greymouth Car Centre commenced in 1981 and has grown over the past 40 plus years to be the largest used car dealership on the West Coast.
From small beginnings in Hokitika, where the first painting of cars was done in Gibson Quay, to the car yard that is now on both sides of the road in Herbert Street, Greymouth, next to Monteith's Brewery, it is estimated more than 15,000 used vehicles have been sold to customers up and down the West Coast and Buller, and with the advent of internet/on-line trading, all over New Zealand.
The Japanese car import boom created by the deregulation of the New Zealand car market by the New Zealand Government in the mid 1980s was the catalyst for rapid expansion.
Co-owner Tony Kokshoorn travelled to Japan more than 50 times purchasing vehicles from Japanese dealers. He was followed by Alan Wilson and Phil Campbell who helped Tony with managing and running the yard from 1990 onwards.
Once the cars arrived in New Zealand, fellow co-owner David Kokshoorn, who had done his car painting time with Greymouth Motors, handled all the re-conditioning along with Earl Tremain, Chris Baird, Jamie Owen, Wayne Hume and others who worked in the workshop from time to time.
As the company expanded various old dwellings in Herbert Street were purchased and demolished to make way for more car yard space. One was even relocated to Kaihinu near Hokitika.
Greymouth floods of 1988, the sharemarket crash of 1987, the global financial crisis of 2008 and hurricanes and tornadoes were all survived by the business.
The workshop was extended in 2015 to make room for a bake oven to provide a better environment for painting cars.
With Tony being elected mayor of Greymouth in 2004 and Dave establishing his own auto shop at Gladstone, management of car yard was left to Phil Campbell (25 plus years with Greymouth Car Centre), with longest serving employee Chris Baird (30 years) handling paint shop operations.
Other former staff members included Kevin Wright, Philippa Gill, Lisa Holden, Dave Hunt, John Thompson, Cleve Kokshoorn, Elizabeth Addy, Michelle Sweetman, Paul Bentley, Jade Coleman, Jade Griggs and Dorena Fittock.
Over the years Government intervention in the name of safety and emissions etc, has provided challenging times for the importing of cars, however cars are still imported from Japan today, through relationships that were established over 30 years ago.
New Zealand new cars also form an important part of the stock the yard now displays, as relationships have been built with New Zealand new car dealers locally and in Canterbury. A satellite yard in Westport at Richards Motors was established in 2019.
The Greymouth Car Centre regularly stocks approximately 150 cars with around half of these being on the yard at any one time and the other half being in transit from Japan or other suppliers in New Zealand. This ensures a regular supply of stock is on its way to keep it as full as possible.
Timeline of Kokshoorn Bros 48 years in business
- 1975 Tony & Dave Kokshoorn go into business painting cars in Gibson Quay, Hokitika
- 1977 Purchased a small paint shop in the former Kennedy Bros building, Boundary Street, Greymouth and started trading as Greymouth Car Painters (Now Mark Jones Collision Repairs)
- 1981 Purchased and demolished old dwelling at 56 Herbert Street and started selling cars on this site with around 15 cars.
- 1984 Purchased old dwelling at 55 Herbert Street and built the paint shop.
- 1988 Greymouth floods cause havoc, cars temporarily moved.
- 1988 Start importing used cars from Japan after the NZ Government deregulated the market. With imported cars being popular, further expansion was required.
- 1996 Dwelling at 54 Herbert Street was purchased and yard expanded.
Lease on Kiwi Rail land at town end of yard further increased yard size.
- 2005 Tornado narrowly misses car yard, but caused widespread damage in Greymouth.
- 2010 Dwelling at 55 Herbert Street purchased, grooming shed re-located.
- 2013 Office renovated.
- 2014 Cyclone Ita causes damage throughout West Coast, insurance claim to vehicles on yard in excess of $300,000.
- 2015 Workshop extended to include bake oven for painting cars.
- 2019 Satellite yard in Westport established at Richard Motors.
Since 2019 Greymouth car centre has had a selection of vehicles available for sale at:
Normally up to 10 vehicles held in stock. John, Graeme and Tina at Richards motors can help you with any enquiries.
The entire sale process including finance can be completed in Westport.