Merritts Motor Group will open two sales outlets, in Aylesbury and Amersham. The other 10 retailers are: Luffield Cars in Loughborough, SMC Group, Holden Group, Kerridges of Needham Market, Mantles of Royston, Perkins of Rayne, Startins Group, Souls of Olney, North City Autos and Thomas Day Motors.
NAC UK said the new appointments marked the start of its planned expansion to get 80 dealers signed up to the MG franchise.
Stephen Cox, NAC UK sales/franchise manager, told AM last month that the company was looking to sign 10 dealers at once – “otherwise it looks inequitable”.
The new appointments were signed up in two batches: Merritts and Luffield Cars were first, announced last week via press release; the other 10 dealers were confirmed to AM this week ahead of the official announcement.
Cox had previously planned to appoint the first five dealers by the end of May. NAC plans to hold a traditional Chinese signing ceremony for the dealers.
Each operation will have dedicated showroom space adhering to the MG’s new corporate identity requirements and will have MG sales personnel and a dedicated service technician.
Merritts operates Jaguar, Lotus, Skoda and Peugeot franchises, while Luffield Cars has a Citroën retail site. Other franchises held by retailers in the new network include Kia, Ford, Skoda, Mitsubishi, Renault and Fiat.
David Wood, general manager for Luffield Cars, which was previously a recognised MG X-Power specialist and is still an MG service centre in the UK, said: “We feel privileged to have been chosen as one of the founding retailers of the new MG franchise network. We are fully committed towards the development of the business and we consider the future of MG cars to be extremely exciting.”
Kevin Badrick, general manager for Merritts, a former MG Rover retailer for 10 years, said: “We are very excited to be associated with an iconic name boasting such a rich heritage. To be one of the first franchised dealers is special.”