On this cold and drizzly morning, ambient light provides the only light in the showroom of Saturn of Wichita's east-side dealership.
In the center of the showroom sit half a dozen computers, printers and monitors in a pile on the floor, and a neat stack of file boxes.
Two rows of chairs for the service waiting area have been pushed next to an unlit gas fireplace.
The only sounds are the hum of a nearly empty snack machine and of Christy Downing, the daughter of Saturn of Wichita owner Scott Davies, packing up her office.
A Saturn marketing poster in the showroom reads: "If you're wondering where the car business is headed, it's here."
This isn't the way Scott Davies planned to wrap up 31 years of selling cars. But Saturn of Wichita's fate wasn't up to him.
General Motors canned the car brand known as "a different kind of car company" after Penske Automotive retracted its bid to buy Saturn on Sept. 30.
In 1991, Davies, 57, and two other Scholfield employees had been tapped to oversee Wichita's new Saturn dealership.
Over more than a decade, the Wichita dealership grew from one location to two, and from three employees to 60.
Davies bought Saturn of Wichita from Vic Scholfield, Steve Hatchett and Tom Devlin in 2001.
In its 18 years, Saturn of Wichita sold more than 34,000 Saturns, Davies said.
Sitting in his office discussing a tumultuous year, Davies said that his office is one of the few that still looks occupied.
Family pictures sit on his dust-free desk, and memorabilia from the University of Kansas — which Davies attended on a swimming scholarship — hangs on the walls. He needs it to be that way.
"It's positive energy," Davies said.
Having a positive attitude has been an important attribute for Davies in the past year.
"When GM put us on notice a year ago, that was probably the hardest year I've spent in my life," he said. "Employees were like, 'What's going to happen to me?' We just put a positive spin on everything."
The collapse of the Penske deal not only killed his Saturn of Wichita dealership, it also scuttled plans to reopen a Saturn dealership in Kansas City, Kan.
"We had a location picked out," said Steve Hatchett, Scholfield dealerships' managing partner. "We were going to go in with him on doing a dealership in Kansas City.
"He's handled it remarkably well."
Tying up loose ends
Since the collapse of the Penske deal, Davies has focused on three things: selling his remaining inventory of new Saturns, trying to find his 60 employees jobs elsewhere and tying up the dealership's loose ends.
Davies said he had only 15 new Saturns remaining after Cash for Clunkers, and those have been sold.
The dealership wrapped up its new and used car sales at the Saturn of Wichita west dealership last week.
Walker Russell, who worked for Davies for 19 years, said Davies' focus these past few weeks may look like it has been pulled a dozen different directions. But, Russell said, finding jobs for his employees was his "No. 1 effort."
"There's not a lot of owners like that," said Russell, who is among a large majority of Saturn of Wichita workers hired by Scholfield.
Russell said he thinks Davies "felt like he was failing the employees" even though Davies had no control over GM's decision to ax Saturn after the Penske deal failed.
Russell is now service director at Scholfield Buick, GMC and Hyundai. Most of the Saturn employees were hired by Scholfield dealerships.
"It has been a blessing for all of us," Russell said of being hired by Scholfield, which also acquired all of Saturn of Wichita's parts and service business.
Scott Hatchett, managing partner of Scholfield Buick GMC and Hyundai, said many of the Saturn employees were once Scholfield employees. In some ways, it's been like a reunion.
"They're really good people," Scott Hatchett said. "I know what their capabilities are. I wasn't going to let them be jobless."
Davies said he's found jobs for all but two Saturn employees.
"I should have them placed soon," Davies said.
"This is like a family."
'A long rest'
Davies said he'll probably be working to wrap up the dealership through the end of the year.
He's still working on getting Saturn of Wichita's two properties — at 11200 E. Central and 8800 W. Central — leased or sold.
He said he has hundreds of vendor contracts that he needs to sever.
"This has been the biggest job," he said.
So far, most of the vendors have been understanding about why he needs to terminate those contracts. Others haven't.
"Some of those out-of-town people ... they don't care," he said. "They want their money."
Davies declined to say whether he'll be walking away from the dealership with any money.
"The value of the business that we had set for the business is now zero," he said.
As for what's next for him, he said he doesn't know.
For now, he said, "I'm going to take a long rest."
Steve Hatchett said the door will always be open for Davies if he chooses to stay in the car business.
"When that time comes, we'll be behind him 100 percent," Steve Hatchett said.
"There's been a lot of tough things happen to him. When he's ready, we'll (help) start a new chapter in his life."