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Mazda puts zoom-zoom into used cars

Mazda has given its used car programme a complete overhaul and a new name as it looks to build on growing customer awareness of its zoom-zoom brand.

Mazda ZZ+ (zoom-zoom plus) offers customers the same pre-sale inspection, vehicle and finance history, mileage check and 12-month unlimited warranty as the old scheme. It adds pan-European breakdown roadside assistance, seven-day drive-away insurance, 30-day exchange promise and free accident management and advice in the event of an accident.

Mazda hopes the new programme will encourage retailers to put more focus on the used car market.

The old scheme fell short, said Mazda sales director Jeremy Thompson, because it did not generate sufficient volumes of cars, particularly two to three-year-old vehicles.

The programme coincides with the launch of Mazda Remarketing Services, a used car stock locator which aims to repatriate more ex-fleet vehicles into the retail network.

“All our used cars inventory will be offered to dealers through the system, such as contract hire de-fleet,” said Thompson.

“We will use VRS to support the scheme with properly prepped cars going through the network. It will reduce the number of cars going to auction.”

Mazda is providing dealers with ZZ+ signage for free as the programme rolls out over the rest of the year.

The carmaker is part-way through an audit of its retail standards, expected to be completed at the end of September.

Early data suggests a few adjustments will be required – Mazda calls it a “tightening up to remove ambiguity”.

Peripheral demands, such as mandating of IT systems, will be dropped.

It is also developing a training programme for sales staff that will help them to articulate Mazda’s brand values to potential customers, in particular its sports heritage with the MX-5 and RX-8.

“We have built our brand through advertising and marketing, but do we get zoom-zoom in the dealership?” asked Thompson.

“Zoom-zoom is about the way the customer is treated and handled, not necessarily the look of the showroom. It’s the most recognised brand after Volks-wagen’s ‘vorchsprung durch technik’.

“We will increasingly focus on frontline staff – sales and aftersales – so they can play to Mazda’s strengths.”

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