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Yorkshire group retails cars ‘too good’ to go to auction

West Riding Motor Group believes it has found a winning formula for low-price selling part-exchanges by introducing a ‘too good to auction’ business at its Bradford Toyota dealership.

Group used car manager Paul Rawlinson said the first month of trading produced 12 sales at an average net profit of around £500, meeting the initial objectives in the business plan.

“We started this to meet local demand,” said Rawlinson. “Many people are looking for inexpensive first cars for a son or daughter, or to use as low-mileage family runarounds.

“They are frightened to go to an auction to buy one, and I have seen those who do make bad mistakes.”

Rawlinson will monitor the project closely.

The retail profit is derived from avoiding auction charges, transport costs and full refurbishment.

The target for the first 12 months is 150 sales and if it is a success, West Riding Motor Group will probably extend it to its other franchised Toyota sites at Huddersfield and Silsden, near Keighley.

‘Too Good’ has a website.

Cars that qualify for Too Good to Auction get a workshop check based on safety.

A worn tyre will probably be replaced but scuffs to the paintwork are left.

Cars are sold with a one-month warranty.

“People understand what they are buying,” said Rawlinson. “We operate on a low margin and price cars after making a nationwide check on what is a competitive figure.”

One of the first cars sold was an 02-plate, 70,000-mile Yaris.

Higher value Toyotas are sold through the manufacturer’s approved used scheme.

West Riding Motor Group operates a 60-day stocking policy before used cars go for auction – this happens after an additional 40 days with ‘too good’ stock.

“We put in place stocking finance for cars held for longer but so far we have not needed to use it,” said Rawlinson.

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