Used car focus for Mercedes dealers

Used car focus for Mercedes dealers

16/04/2012 in News, All News, Car Manufacturer News, Dealer News

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Used car focus for Mercedes dealers

Mercedes-Benz UK wants its retail network to ramp up approved used car sales and has invested in a series of training workshops for its dealers.

More than 800 network personnel, from sales executives to general managers, have been through a programme to ensure staff have the right knowledge and expertise to continue to raise awareness of the benefits of the Mercedes-Benz Approved Used Scheme.

Colin Niklas, used cars and transport manager for Mercedes-Benz UK, said: “The aim of the workshops was to provide delegates with the knowledge to clearly demonstrate to customers the added value and financial benefits of the Mercedes-Benz Approved Used Scheme.”

The training, conducted by Mondial Assistance UK, separated the overall cost of used vehicle ownership, such as servicing, warranty and roadside assistance, to show the longer term cost savings that being a Mercedes-Benz Approved Used Scheme customer can bring.

“It’s fair to say, what we think we know, and what we actually know, are often very different,” said David Colbeck, a director at AM100-ranked retailer Listers Group, which has Mercedes outlets at Lincoln, Boston, Hull and Grimsby.

“The whole team came away from the training workshop with a greater level of knowledge of the Mercedes-Benz Approved Used Car Scheme. Now we have greater confidence in extending the proposition.

"We know we are offering a quality product that brings our customers added benefits which boost their ownership experience and our relationship.”

 


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Listers Group

Proudly a family business - “makes us more human to deal with” compared to a plc, the group’s website claims - the Warwickshire based company was started by Terry Lister, now managing director, in 1979 when he opened his first dealership.

It now has 40 centres representing 10 brands, Audi, BMW Honda, Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Mini, Seat, Skoda, Smart, Toyota (cars and vans) and Volkswagen (cars and vans). An Xtra brand sells on part-exchanged vehicles through six centres.

A training centre at Stratford-upon-Avon ensures all staff are instilled with the family ‘business, not plc’ ethos. A customer liaison team makes over 100,000 calls a year to gauge staff performance.

An emphatic test drive policy sees Listers have more than £15 million of stock on hand for customers to try at any one time.

The Lister’s website says of the group: “As the major automotive PLC groups battle for profits to support shareholders, vying to buy or take over each other in the process, Listers remains proudly independent. Our simple philosophy, firmly centred around customer care and satisfaction, has served us well for over 30 years. We see no reason to change it now.

“Call into any one of over 40 Listers centres, enjoy a complimentary tea or coffee, take a look around, enjoy a test drive and chat to any member of our team. Hopefully you’ll become a member of the Listers extended family soon.”

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Mercedes-Benz UK

Mercedes-Benz’s ambition is to become the number one premium brand in the UK car market (fleet and retail), on the way to becoming the world’s best-selling premium brand.

These are courageous aspirations given how long it has lagged behind its rivals BMW and Audi. The growth will be fuelled by new products, many of which are compact and affordable, giving drivers an opportunity to own or lease a new Mercedes-Benz they might not have had before, whether because the cars were out of their budget or lacked the appeal to attract younger customers.

Cars such as the latest A-Class, the CLA four-door coupé and GLA crossover are all helping boost growth and with almost 110,000 registrations in 2013, it is gaining on BMW and Audi.

The Smart range is being relaunched with a new Fortwo and Forfour this year, based on a shared platform with the new Renault Twingo. This should create renewed interest in Smart as well as attract customers who might have outgrown their Fortwo.

Note: Manufacturers administer the franchised contracts for cars and LCVs in different ways. Broadly, for some the contract to sell cars and LCVs is managed through a separate dealer contract. For others one contract covers both vehicle types.

AMi seeks to acknowledge the difference and reflect it in the count of each dealer groups total franchised outlets (franchised businesses) and sites (locations).

Mercedes-Benz treats car and LCV sales as coming under separate contracts –AMi counts each individually.


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Increase: 41.7 %

Decrease: 58.3 %


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