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Autotrade: Lubricants can boost dealers’ profit margins

Oils and lubricants can account for up to 10% of dealers’ profits. But it’s an area of real confusion for customers faced with an expanding range of oil options, car manufacturer-recommended products and bewildering terminology like 10w-40, low ash and synthetics.

Their dependence on dealer’ advice should mean an easy sell for the right product. Advances in engine technology, plus the trend for car manufacturers to specify a particular grade of oil, makes the choice of the correct lubricant vital for achieving good fuel economy and low emissions. 

Adrian Brabazon, Castrol franchise workshop marketing manager UK and Ireland, believes the key to developing this area lies with sales advisers. “There are two points. The first is to help the sales advisers justify the price of the oil used in the service and the second is the one-litre top-up,” he says. 

“As with any price, we convey the benefits to the customer. Less than 10% of people who take their car for a service at a main dealer know what oil to use.

“This creates more consternation when it comes to the oil because the customer just sees the price and some sales advisers are wary that they cannot justify the price of oil or don’t understand the benefits.

  • Read this story in full in the 23 Jan 09 issue of AM. To subscribe to AM magazine click here or call 01733 468659.

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