Castrol warns that dealers need to advertise more to motorists
Castrol warns that dealers need to advertise more to motorists

Franchised dealers have lost servicing work to independents so far in 2011.

That’s according to Trend Tracker, who’s latest report suggests franchises are loosing increasing amounts of work to the independent sector.

The latest report shows that independents and fast fitters now account for 45.7 percent of all servicing work, up from 42.1 percent in 2010.

The  National Franchised Dealer Association has said that franchisers are aware of the situation, and that they will be working towards being more proactive in retaining servicing.

NFDA director Sur Robinson said: “Franchised dealers are working hard to stay competitive within an ever changing market. They are already adopting new approaches to retain their customer base. However dealers need to explore even more ways to retain value-conscious customers.

“In the current economic climate consumers are reducing spending more than ever and are always looking for the best prices. It is extremely important the consumer looks at a ‘like for like’ service schedule when making any price comparisons.”

For the independent sector the report is welcome news, Independent Garage Association director Stuart James said: “The independent sector must not sit back, standards can be raised even higher.

“We have fought for the right to access manufacturer information and for independents to repair newer cars within the warranty periods, and won. The opportunity for independents to expand their customer base beyond the 3-4 year old cars to the newer car market is there.”

Published by Darrenmoss

CAT magazine's in-house reporter and self-confessed petrol head

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  1. Great news for us independent garages but hardly a suprise as we see it on a daily basis.

    The franchised dealers are reacting though and quite agressively it has to be said…..

    Local dealers to ABP are offering massive retail discounts on both servicing and repair work in order to compete with us. In fact we’ve seen franchised dealers even offering customers the choice of servicing options using non-genuine service parts AND amazingly not sticking to the manufacturer spec servicing schedule!!!

    Its one thing competing against the pro-active independents but a franchised dealer cutting corners on servicing specification is crazy especially when here at ABP we only service to exact manufacturer spec. I wonder if these dealerships are still stamping the service book to say ‘serviced to manufacturer spec’ when they actually aren’t….?

    All we do is educate our customers to see what they get at ABP for their money against what the dealerships are offering for the same price – reduced spec service and discount from massively inflated labour price.

    Chris Meredith
    ABP Motorsport