Lloyd's Tire & Auto Care has been serving Santa Cruz County for 75 years
When Lloyd Johnson opened the doors to his small tire shop on Commercial Way he could hardly have imagined that 75 years later Lloyd’s Tire and Auto Care would be one of the largest independent Michelin dealers in the United States. Today’s Lloyd’s is far more than that simple 1940 tire shop, featuring an incredibly large inventory of quality tires plus one stop auto care.
Though Lloyd’s is now largely a consumer serving business with Michelin as its leading brand, the original store had mostly commercial accounts with products from General Tire. Stan Johnson, Lloyd’s son, worked with his father through the early sixties, and then took over the business upon Lloyd’s retirement. Also around that time, two other significant changes would help create the Lloyd’s Tire and Auto Care you see today.
First was the move to the current location in 1960. As the business started to outgrow its original property, Lloyd made a real estate swap with the owners of Santa Cruz Lumber for the property where Lloyd’s sits today. With its convenient location, multiple service bays and large warehouse space, it was seen as ideal for serving an expanding retail market. The other change was the start of a long affiliation with Michelin as the Lloyd’s flagship brand. The quality products that Michelin, makes complement a business that is founded on fast, friendly service and complete customer satisfaction.
Lloyd’s was still a mostly commercial serving operation through the early eighties when Stan’s son Larry and his brother Lloyd began to run the business. The third generation of Johnsons saw the market trending towards imports in need of high performance tires. They adjusted their inventory accordingly, and today Lloyd’s is primarily a retail tire store that also provides a wide range of auto care services.
Eventually Larry took over the business as brother Lloyd went off to do missionary work in places like Costa Rica, New Zealand, British Columbia, and parts of South America. In 1998, Dean Schwartz came to Lloyd’s as a part owner, developing and managing the company’s service and repair business. Since then, Larry and Dean have overseen a gradual expansion of services offered to customers.
Lloyd Sr. was raised on a farm and started in business as a farm equipment distributor. The work ethic that he learned at an early age was passed on to his son and grandsons, as well as to their employees at Lloyd’s Tire Service. He also taught the next generations to value customers and to offer them the highest levels of courtesy and honesty. The lessons he taught are at the core of what makes the business successful today.
When he first opened the doors, Lloyd Sr. may not have envisioned the state of the art tire and auto service center that exists in his name today, but there is no doubt as to how proud he would have been of the 21st Century Lloyd’s Tire and Auto Care and the generations that followed in his footsteps.