Lithia entered its first international market, Canada, in August 2021.

But Western Europe has long been a Lithia target.

Lithia CEO Bryan DeBoer told Automotive News in Dallas in January that the company had been looking for the right partner in the U.K. and in Western Europe for nearly half a decade.

“We hope to be there in the next few quarters or so,” he told Automotive News at the time.

In August, Sky News named Lithia as the unidentified bidder in a failed deal to buy Pendragon, one of the largest auto retailers in the U.K.

Lithia would be the third publicly traded auto retailer with U.K. dealerships following rivals Penske Automotive Group and Group 1 Automotive.

Lithia, of Medford, Ore., outsold AutoNation in 2022 to become the largest dealership group in the U.S., with sales of 271,596 new vehicles. Lithia’s figures include a small but undisclosed number of vehicles sold in Canada, including those from a Harley-Davidson store, as well as recreational vehicles sold at RV stores.

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