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Pep Boys speed shop opens near Century III Mall

| Monday, June 10, 2013, 11:34 a.m.
Jennifer R. Vertullo | Daily News
Gerry Kerna of Cranberry Township, standing with her RPM-built 1962 Chevy II Runt, talks with Jon Harrison of Area 51 Autoworx and John Ortiz of High Octane Hotrods during a Saturday grand opening for the Pep Boys Speed Shop.
Jennifer R. Vertullo | Daily News
Pep Boys Speed Shop manager Ryan Serrino, right, talks with former board member Bill Snyder and president Jerry Hears of Pittsburgh Cars during a Saturday grand opening.

Automotive enthusiasts filled the Pleasant Hills Pep Boys parking lot with nearly 200 custom cars for the grand opening of the store's speed shop.

The store has been a part of the Century III landscape for decades. The addition was completed in March.

“We have about 100 speed shops throughout the country, and that trend is growing,” speed shop manager Ryan Serrino said. “The closest to this location are in Lancaster and Ohio. This is the only one in Western Pennsylvania.”

The speed shop offers performance parts and accessories geared toward car enthusiasts who want easier access to the products they need.

“It's all about convenience,” said McKeesporter Jon Harrison, who operates the Area 51 Autoworx custom paint and body shop. “There was nothing in the area any more. Speed shops went to the wayside in the '80s, and the only way to get supplies was through an online competitor. You had to wait three days for parts.

“Now, if you're on a race track or a car show circuit, (Pep Boys Speed Shop) carries all the parts to put you back on the road now.”

Serrino said customers are showing their appreciation not only at the grand opening, but with daily sales.

“It's all local guys, whether it's a retired guy fixing up an antique or the young guys fixing up a Honda paycheck to paycheck,” he said. “Our clientele ranges in age from 18 to 70, but their interest is the same — cars.”

The shop caters to those interested in customizing, racing and off-roading. It carries dozens of brands such as Edelbrock, Mr. Gasket, ARP, Fel-Pro and Spectra.

The shop is located at 390 Clairton Blvd. For more information, call 412-655-5636.

Jennifer R. Vertullo is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1956 or jvertullo@tribweb.com.

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