Mercedes-Benz is poised to axe around 30% of its UK dealership owners as it implements a detailed performance review. Only around five of the 181 outlets are expected to close but DaimlerChrysler UK wants to build a retail nucleus on its most successful dealership owners.
One Mercedes dealer principal said: “We know the longterm plans and that there are going to be many casualties along the way.
“The days of partners lounging in their gin palaces just waiting for business to come their way are long gone. Senior DCUK management in Milton Keynes are ready to streamline the whole operation to generate far more efficiency and synergy.
“Those who are being successful at the moment will get stronger and be awarded more outlets and satellite dealerships while those who have underperformed will be terminated.”
The dealer principal said that in two years, when the process was completed, there would be few single-operated dealerships.
DCUK is also reviewing its network of Chrysler Jeep dealerships and wants to dealers capable of developing new sites housing the three brands.
Chrysler Jeep UK director Simon Elliott has confirmed that the review of its dealership network would result in changes.
He and Mercedes UK passenger car boss Dermot Kelly will have the findings of their reviews by the end of this month. Dealers will be briefed before the future retail framework is revealed.