The venture comes as Perry Group prepares to reveal its direct sales set up, linked to a call centre in north London. Customers will be able to compare models, book demonstrator cars and buy online.
DC Cook chairman Derek Cook confidently predicted that the import business, which will source cars exclusively from Totalise Eurekar's European dealer network, would take conquest sales from its rivals.
“We may take a little bit of business from other dealerships, but most sales will be incremental, from competitor importers,” he said. “They are only concerned with new car sales, but our strength comes from also providing an aftersales service.”
Mr Cook believes that two types of customer are developing: those who will continue to buy at the showroom, and those happy to purchase online. He dismissed suggestions that dealers would be edged aside in favour of virtual sales.
“We reduced our network from 39 to 27 outlets in advance of this launch; our dealerships will not be adversely affected,” he said.
Most makes will be available, “except Fiat and Renault” - Mr Cook said they already offered prices that match mainland Europe. DC Cook, which launched its original dealer website five years ago, plans to unveil two “revolutionary” internet portals in late April/early May.