Almost three years since the AA warned motor retailers they were ignoring an important part of the industry, many dealers appear slow to catch on. This is despite seeing their aftersales operations hit by extended service intervals and longer-lived components.
“Selling and fitting tyres is undoubtedly the quickest and most effective single opportunity to increase aftersales revenue,” says John Church, chairman of Group Tyre (UK).
It has just been appointed partner with Mercedes-Benz for its UK tyre replacement programme, and already operates similar initiatives with Porsche GB, ChryslerJeep, Subaru and Bentley.
His business has a dedicated dealer support team, able to provide training, supply equipment and racking, and assist with stock control and monitoring.
It also has a network of 28 distribution centres in the UK which provide same day availability of OE replacement tyres for almost all makes of vehicle.
Terry Cuttell, who heads the specialist dealer division, says once franchised dealers factor-in the supplementary business a tyre operation can provide, such as using free tyre checks to keep in regular contact with customers, they should see it as a useful profit and marketing opportunity.
“Drivers want to deal with the team who know their car and maintain it, and who not only understand its tyre requirements but also respect it during the fitting operation. The correct torque loadings for wheel nuts, care of expensive alloys and precision balancing are areas of genuine concern,” says Cuttell.