A Little Ditty About Our Founder & President Sid Phillips

Number One Auto Sales was founded by Sid Phillips on Valentine’s Day in 1995. The less-than-half-acre gravel lot on which a 12×24 “hut” of an office building sat along Route 20 in Buckhannon housed about 12 vehicles, all cleaned up and ready to be sold. Sid had built that office building partially in his mother’s driveway. It had two small offices (and no bathroom!)

The ironic part about the opening of this new venture was that Sid, a former local banker, had never sold a car before. He didn’t know much about cars in terms of the best practices of selling and fixing them. But he had a deep appreciation and love for people. He loves helping people, he always has. He grew up learning about people in his father’s hardware store, Shannon Hardware, on Main Street in Buckhannon during the 1970s. His father taught him the principles of working hard and being nice to people. He started by sweeping warehouse floors with his brother B.J. and graduated into delivering furniture and household appliances to people’s homes in a van that had a three on the tree (standard shift on the steering column). He also spent time inside the store helping the customers make buying decisions to meet their needs.

Not long after graduating from West Virginia Wesleyan College, Sid was hired by The Central National Bank and soon became a loan officer. Again, he was where he was comfortable: Helping people, only this time with their financial needs. It wasn’t about money, or rates, or quota to Sid – it was all simply about helping people. Twelve years and two bank mergers later, Sid found it becoming increasingly difficult to help people the way he wanted to, with the “big bank” mentality. It was time for a change.


So… Why The Car Business?

That’s the only logical question at this point, isn’t it? During his last couple of years at the bank, Sid developed a dealer finance department that had him traveling northern West Virginia meeting and building banking relationships with car dealers. He met some wonderful people and dealers on this journey, and also a few bad eggs… you know, the ones that give the car business a bad name. One of the wonderful dealers he developed a close friendship with told him that he should open his own lot in Buckhannon. Sid’s response: “Selling cars? I don’t know the first thing about selling cars!” “That’s true,” his friend said, “But you know all about helping people, finance, and marketing. That’s what you’re good at. And your community needs someone who’s all about helping people.” These words stuck with Sid as he contemplated his future. After taking some time to digest his friend’s advice, Sid decided to take the huge risk and open his own business. And that’s how Number One Auto was born.



Building A Family Business

Sid grew up in a family business, so it was only logical that someday he would have his own family business. In 2006 after graduating from Marshall University, Shea Phillips moved back to Buckhannon to join his father’s journey of helping people, and thus a true family business was born. Shea was 11 years old when his Pops opened Number One Auto, so like Sid, he grew up around his father’s business. He learned all about good old-fashioned customer service, working hard with integrity, and treating everyone by The Golden Rule. Together Sid and Shea have grown Number One Auto into the most awarded, successful independent dealership in all of West Virginia. (see below for a list of all of their achievements).


25 Years Later, Number One Auto Is An Industry Leader In… Helping People

What sets Number One Auto apart from other dealers is their focus, intention, and atmosphere. Sure, they are an independent car dealer, but they view themselves as being in the business of helping people. They work extremely hard at providing a lot full of better quality vehicles for their customers to choose from, a plethora of banks and finance companies to get their customer the best possible rate and term available in the industry, and an extremely unique service department to keep the maintenance cost as low as possible for their customers’ vehicle needs.

Their team of solutions experts simply DO NOT GIVE UP until they have a positive answer to give their customer during the sales and financing process. They don’t simply take a credit application, submit it, and twiddle their thumbs; they work hard with the banks to negotiate the best possible approval available for their customer to fit both their budget and their needs.


Number One Auto Is Also An Industry Leader In… HAVING FUN!

Stress and buying a vehicle have always gone hand-in-hand. Sid said, “Fooey with that! Let’s have a good time! After all, you’re buying your next vehicle… it should be FUN! The atmosphere that Sid and Shea have created in their business is unlike any other dealership’s atmosphere anywhere around. It’s all about FUN! The lobby is showered with fresh coffee and hot tea, fresh baked cookies, candy, and popcorn, and every once in a while, a really corny joke! You are greeted with a smile and welcomed as if you were a family member stopping by. The entire car-buying process at Number One Auto is relaxing, laid back, and FUN!

And the proof is in the pudding; just go to our Facebook page or Google page and read our customer reviews. They speak for themselves about the unique, fun, relaxing, family atmosphere at Number One Auto! Go ahead and Drive On Down!


Various Number One Auto Awards from 25 Years In Business

Integrity Award – 2010

Pursuit of Excellence Award – 2012

NIADA National Outstanding Pioneer Award – 2019

National Quality Dealer Award – 1995

National Quality Dealer Award – 1996

National Quality Dealer Award – 1997

National Quality Dealer Award – 1998

National Quality Dealer Award – 1999

National Quality Dealer Award – 2000

National Quality Dealer Award – 2001

National Quality Dealer Award – 2002

National Quality Dealer Award – 2003

National Quality Dealer Award – 2004

National Quality Dealer Award – 2005

National Quality Dealer Award – 2006

National Quality Dealer Award – 2007

National Quality Dealer Award – 2008

National Quality Dealer Award – 2009

National Quality Dealer Award – 2010

National Quality Dealer Award – 2011

National Quality Dealer Award – 2012

National Quality Dealer Award – 2013

National Quality Dealer Award – 2014

National Quality Dealer Award – 2015

National Quality Dealer Award – 2016

National Quality Dealer Award – 2017

National Quality Dealer Award – 2018

National Quality Dealer Award – 2019