Celebrating 95 Years of Service


Thank you! What an honor it has been to be able to serve as Madison’s Ford dealer for 95 years. We would first like to express our gratitude and appreciation for the diligent and hard-working effort our entire staff has put in over these many years. What an amazing team of men and women we get to work with every day. We are truly humbled that you have dedicated your careers to helping build Kayser into what it has become. We would also like to thank all of our guests who have trusted us with a vehicle purchase or repair over the past many years. Your continued business is greatly appreciated and the primary reason we have been able to do what we love. We have an amazing history thanks to you. - Baxter Family, Owners, Kayser Automotive Group

Our History

Kayser History

1903 – Birth of Ford Motor Company

Henry Ford Incorporated the Ford Motor Company with a $28,000 Cash Investment.

1903
Kayser History

1914 – First Guaranteed Minimum Wage

Ford Introduced the First Guaranteed Minimum wage of $5 per day (which was double the average pay at the time).

1914
World History

1921

1921 – The Pack Plays Their First Game

The Green Bay Packers played their first game, they won 7 – 6 beating Minneapolis.

1921
Kayser History

1925 – Paul A. Kayser Opens First Dealership

Paul A. Kayser son of former Madison Mayor Adolph Kayser opens his dealership on East Washington Ave., Madison WI. Dealership beings selling and servicing the famed Model T Ford.

1925
Kayser History

1927 – Kayser Sells First Used Car

When cars were first sold they often were kept much longer than they are today and finding used cars to buy was much harder than is the case today.

1927
World History

1927 – First Solo Non-Stop Transatlantic Flight

Charles Lindbergh makes the first solo nonstop transatlantic flight in his plane The Spirit of St. Louis.

1927
Kayser History

1930 – Kayser Buys Fox Motor Sales Company

Kayser moves up the street to an expanded location and becomes the exclusive Ford Dealer in the market.

1930
World History

1935 – Kayser Begins Parts Delivery

Kayser designates a delivery truck to deliver auto parts to local repair shops throughout Southern Wisconsin. Prior to this shop owners had to travel to a Ford Dealer to purchase parts.

1935
World History

1941 – Kayser Purchases Lincoln Franchise

Kayser becomes Madison's Lincoln dealer and located the franchise at the corner of Monroe St. and Regent St. This is now the location of Hotel Red.

1941
Kayser History

1942 – US Military Ford Jeeps

Ford began producing Jeeps for the US Military.

1942
Kayser History

1942 – Military Build-up Limits Car Sales

During WWII steel was being rationed for use in building military vehicles and only civilians in certain occupations could purchase cars. Kayser was selected as one of eight Madison dealers that could except a government license for the purchase of a car and the only one of the eight still in business today.

1942
World History

1945 – Kayser Sells to It’s First Celebrity

Eddie Peabody was known as the world's greatest banjo player. Born in Massachusetts and living in California, Peabody found Kayser during his visits to Chicago to entertain US Troops returning from WWII.

1945
Kayser History

1947 – Madison’s Beltline Highway Begins Construction

Construction of the Beltline highway began. It opened for the first time in 1950.

1947
World History

1950 – Kayser Celebrates 25th Anniversary

This is Kayser's first known all staff photo. Paul Kayser can be seen seated in the center of the photo with black rimmed glasses.

1950
Kayser History

1950 – Kayser Employs Over 100

After further expansion and the addition of a body shop, Kayser Ford has over 100 employees has become the largest Ford Dealer in the State of Wisconsin.

1950
Kayser History

1952 – Kayser’s First Sell-A-Rama

Kayser holds the First Sell-A-Rama Sale – The catchy radio jingle has taken over the Madison airwaves every July.

1952
Kayser History

1956 – Kenneth Kimport Purchases Kayser

Following the untimely death of Paul Kayser, Kenneth Kimport purchases the business.

1956
World History

1962 – John Glen Orbits Earth

Lt. Colonel John Glen becomes the first U.S. astronaut to orbit the Earth.

1962
Kayser History

1964 – First Mustang

The Ford Mustang is introduced.

1964
World History

1965 – Kayser Becomes Largest Ford Parts Distributor in Midwest

Providing parts to dealers and mechanics all over Wisconsin, Iowa and Illinois. During this time it was custom for Parts Department staff to wear white lab coats as part of their uniform.

1965
World History

1969 – Moon Landing

Apollo 11 lands the first human beings on the Moon. Ford Motor Company owned that provided the electrical engineering for NASA.

1969
Kayser History

1971 – Kayser Dealership Relocates

After decades of continued success and growth, the Kayser Dealership moves to its current location on the Beltline Hwy.

1971
World History

1973 – Oil Crisis

US in midst of OAPEC oil embargo, retail gas prices per gallon “spiked” from the national average of 38 cents to 55 cents per gallon.

1973
Kayser History

1985 – Pat Baxter

Pat Baxter purchases a portion of the business and takes a leadership role as President and General Manager. In subsequent years Mr. Baxter acquires the entire business and continues its expansion.

1985
World History

1988 – Kayser Buys Yugo Franchise

Touted as a revolutionary car, the Yugo was sticker priced at $4,000. The US Market skeptical of the car and for good reason. The Yugo topped Time Magazine's list of the "50 Worst Cars Ever Made". Kayser stopped selling the Yugo two years after it began and ended up purchasing back over 20 cars from customers experiencing major issues.

1988
World History

1990 – Kayser Buys Jeep Franchise

Kayser buys Jeep franchise and locates it across from it's Ford Dealership in Madison. Kayser would later trade the Madison Jeep franchise for a Nissan franchise.

1990
Kayser History

1994 – Kayser Expands to Sauk Prairie

Kayser purchases Town and Country Motors in Prairie Du Sac, WI. Builds state of the art dealership in Sauk City on Hwy 12, expanding Kayser's franchise offerings to include Chrysler, Dodge and Jeep.

1994
Kayser History

1998 – Kayser Expands to Watertown

Kayser purchases Grinwald Chrysler in Watertown, WI. Builds state of the art dealership on Hwy 16 and adds Jeep and Dodge franchises becoming Jefferson County's only full line Chrysler Dodge Jeep dealer.

1998
Kayser History

2000 – Kayser Expands to Pulaski

Kayser acquires S&L Motors in Pulaski, WI.

2000
World History

2003 – Kayser Buys Isuzu Truck Franchise

Kayser expands its commercial sales division to include the Isuzu Commercial Truck fleet and has Oscar Meyer as one if it's first customers, having bought the truck body that supports the Company's famed Wienermobile.

2003
Kayser History

2003 – Ford Celebrates 100 Years

Ford Motor Company celebrates its 100 anniversary. Kayser marks the event with a double-page spread in the Wisconsin State Journal.

2003
World History

2008 – US Auto Industry Goes Bankrupt

Financial crisis grips US auto industry causing GM and Chrysler to file for bankruptcy. Ford being the only US auto manufacturer not to receive government 'Bail Out' assistance.

2008
Kayser History

2010 – Kayser Reaches Another Milestone

Celebrates its 85th anniversary.

2010
World History

2012 – Kayser Purchases Lincoln Franchise

Becomes Madison's exclusive Ford Lincoln dealership.

2012
Kayser History

2014 – Sean Baxter Becomes President

Sean Baxter, the oldest son of Pat Baxter is promoted to President.

2014
World History

2015 – Kayser Celebrates 90 Years

Kayser Celebrates its 90th Anniversary.

2015
Kayser History

2019 – Kayser Acquires Ballweg Chevrolet Buick

Kayser adds Chevrolet and Buick in Sauk City, WI to round out domestic franchise offerings.

2019
World History

2019 – Pat Baxter Honored By Chrysler

Kayser Chrysler Center of Sauk Prairie celebrates 25 year milestone.

2019

In 1985, Pat Baxter became part owner, President and General Manager.  After becoming sole owner, Pat continued the tradition of continuous improvement established by the founder Paul Kayser. With Pat’s leadership and dedication Kayser has grown to become the market leader as well as achieving an outstanding level of customer service.

In 2014, Pat promoted his oldest Son, Sean to President. Sean Baxter, along with his brothers Ryan and Brendan, is the new generation of leadership at Kayser.

Kayser’s ongoing mission is to honor the guests’ experience. The re-focus on creating an amazing and valuable interaction is setting new standards in the industry.