Automotive Specialists of Payson and Payson Driveline is expanding. Owners Sean and Maggie Meares have opened Tonto Motor Works in Punkin Center.
They plan to bring the same high quality of service to customers in the Tonto Basin as those in the Payson area have enjoyed for almost 22 years. The Meares and two of their employees split their time between the Payson shop and the new business in Punkin Center, Maggie explained. The company employs a total of eight people, including the Meares, but would like to hire more in time.
Tonto Motor Works -- or TMW as the Meares call it -- opened for business Nov. 15 in 7,000 square feet of space at the corner of Hwy. 188 and Greenback Road -- the former Punkin Center Marine Repair facility.
The people they bought the building from said they were going to be swamped as soon as they opened their doors, Maggie said. And they were right, TMW has had a wonderful reception from the people in the Punkin Center and Tonto Basin areas.
"It was exciting and a little scary at the same time," Maggie said.
TMW provides auto, truck and RV repairs and service and will be expanding into marine work. There is also sales space, so the Meares will be stocking NAPA auto parts for the backyard mechanics who enjoy working on their own vehicles, plus boat and RV parts and accessories.
"We have always had plans to expand," Maggie said. "We talked about Apache Junction and the White Mountains. We camp at the lake sometimes and coming back from camping we saw the building and started talking about expanding in the Tonto Basin area."
The couple also took into consideration the needs of the community. "Tonto Basin is in great need of a service repair facility and a boat repair facility."
Beyond the repair services, parts and accessories, the Meares also plan to offer other services at TMW, such as tires and tire repair, propane, firewood and pellets for stoves. There is a reverse osmosis system at the store for people to fill water jugs. They also have a U-Haul rental operation and plan on doing consignment sales for trailers and RVs, Maggie said.
The shop is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, however, once the fishing and camping season gets in full swing, the Meares plan to open earlier.
For more information about the shop and its services, call (928) 479-2221.