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Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Revealed: 2018’s best – and worst – UK car dealers

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

The 2018 Driver Power has revealed which are Britain’s best car dealers in the eyes of owners. Auto Express quizzed drivers on whether there was enough parking on site, the cleanliness of the waiting areas, the politeness of the staff, and if the work was completed on time. Other factors included the availability of courtesy cars, value for money and the quality of the work. Read on to discover the best – and worst – car dealers in the UK.

10: Mitsubishi

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 86.42 percent
With a dealer satisfaction score of 86.42 percent, Mitsubishi is a new entry in this year’s dealer survey. Owners are critical over a lack of courtesy cars, the standard of work and value for money, but are full of praise for the quick turnaround of any work completed.

9: Volvo

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 86.48 percent
Volvo moves up seven places in this year’s dealer survey, pushing the Swedish brand ahead of its German rivals. Volvo scores highly for the availability of a courtesy car and dealer facilities, but the firm is let down by staff communication and courtesy. Mind your Ps and Qs, Volvo dealers.

8: Skoda

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 86.75 percent
These are changing times for Skoda, with the brand moving further upmarket and investing heavily in a range of SUVs and crossovers. Are Skoda dealers taking their eyes off the ball? An eighth place finish on a list of 29 brands is no disgrace, but Skoda drops from fifth place in 2017. Speed and value for money are seen as weak points.

7: Kia

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 86.86 percent
Kia is ranked second for value for money, scoring well for fixed-price servicing and warranty work covered for seven years. Customers are less enamoured with the facilities on offer and the availability of a courtesy car.

6: Alfa Romeo

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 86.97 percent
A new entry in this year’s survey, Alfa Romeo is also the top performing European firm. The standard of work is Alfa Romeo’s strongest area, while the dealer staff are also praised. The Italian brand just needs to work on its dealer facilities, speed of work and value for money.

5: Jeep

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 87.53 percent
Jeep drops two places to fifth place, but Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) will be happy with two spots in the top 10. The SUV brand scores well across the board, with the standard of facilities the only real bugbear for owners. That said, Auto Express points out that scores have fallen slightly in other areas.

4: Suzuki

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 88.75 percent
Suzuki continues to punch above its weight, with a fourth place finish for the second consecutive year. Suzuki owners are particularly pleased with the standard of work and value for money, with the availability of courtesy cars the only real complaint. Sort this issue and Suzuki could be in the hunt for top spot in 2019.

3: Toyota

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 88.83 percent
It’s a similar story for Toyota, with the availability of courtesy cars the only fly in the ointment. On the plus side, Toyota is up four places from 2017, with its dealer facilities rated second only to Lexus. The standard and speed of work completed are other areas of note.

2: Honda

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 89.43 percent
Honda finishes runner-up for the second consecutive year, making it the leading mainstream manufacturer in the Auto Express Driver Power survey. The Japanese company scores well across the board, with staff politeness and courtesy cars the only areas of complaint.

1: Lexus

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 90.23 percent
Completing an all-Japanese top four – and finishing top for the second year in a row – Lexus dealers continue to impress. Amazingly, Lexus didn’t finish lower than fourth in any of the seven categories, with value for money seen as the firm’s weakest area.

Armed with the knowledge of the best dealers, you know where to go to get good service. But what about the dealers to avoid? Fortunately, the Driver Power survey has the answers. Read on to discover the bottom five.

24: Mazda

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 84.20 percent
Mazda finishes 24th in the survey, with customers criticising a lack of communication from its dealers, along with the standard of work carried out. Other complaints include a slower-than-average work rate, poor value for money and – that common issue – a lack of courtesy cars. Still, at least the Mazda dealers are polite and courteous.

25: Nissan

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 83.85 percent
One owner told Auto Express: “My courtesy car was cancelled an hour before my appointment, so I had to reschedule because of this.” Oh dear. Nissan’s scores are low across the board, but owners are at least happy with the availability of courtesy cars.

26: Dacia

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 83.5 percent
Dacia finishes third from bottom overall, but is ranked the worst for the availability of courtesy cars. Dealer facilities also disappoint, as does the standard of work carried out. Worryingly, for a budget-led brand, Dacia finishes 25th out of 29 for value for money.

27: Renault

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 83.49 percent
From first position in 2016, Renault drops a further 16 places in 2018 to finish second from bottom. Owners are critical of the dirty facilities, a lack of parking and disappointing waiting areas. Value for money isn’t a problem, but Renault dealers need to improve their communication skills and the standard of workmanship.

28: Land Rover

Auto Express Driver Power best car dealers 2018

Dealer satisfaction score: 82.85 percent
Let’s hope Land Rover has strong shoulders, because it’s propping up the entire table. Record sales has resulted in dealers struggling to keep up with demand, leading to four last-place category rankings. The only crumb of comfort: the dealers seem to have the availability of courtesy cars sussed out. For more in-depth analysis, visit the Auto Express website.

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JLR Lookers West London

£12 million JLR flagship dealer opens next to the A40 in London

JLR Lookers West LondonA £12 million flagship new dealer for Jaguar Land Rover alongside the A40 in West London has been officially opened by explorers Sir Ranulph Fiennes and Monty Halls.

The new Lookers Jaguar Land Rover West London dealer is the first new-look Jaguar Land Rover dealer to open in the UK: over the next few years, all Jaguar and Land Rover dealers will look like this.

Britain’s best cars dealers 2016

2017 Land Rover Discovery revealed at last

Prince Harry champions JLR driving challenge at Invictus Gamers

JLR calls it the ARCH look, consisting of a sharp, clean, modern look. It’s part of the firm’s plan to combine Jaguar and Land Rover dealers into one outlet – and there’s £1 billion of investment going into 1,800 retailers across the globe deliver.

Jaguar Land Rover used the opening of the Lookers West London site to give the new Discovery its first UK showroom reveal, as a reward to the dealer group for its investment in the brand: the colossal multi-million-pound retailer site is certainly impressive.

It’s taken 18 months to transform the site, a few hundred yards down the road from the famous Hangar Lane Gyratory, and its opening means the new JLR look will be seen by hundreds of thousands of people every day.

Including JLR CEO Dr. Ralf Speth – his route into London from JLR HQ is via the A40…

In total, the new site can house 44 cars and includes a barista bar, business lounge, kid’s area, and comfy seats to lounge in. It produces its own power via a huge solar stack and the water used to fully detail every used car on the site is fully recycled.

Customers don’t even have to face the elements when they visit: a special drive-in service bay automatically opens garage doors as they drive up, so they can hand over their car to a technician in the warm and dry.

Andy Bruce, Lookers CEO, said: “Our new showroom is the result of a £12m investment into a brand that we really believe in. Our business is doing better than ever thanks in no small part to the incredible array of Jaguar Land Rover products on sale.

“With the new Lookers West London site we’ve created a real premium destination, and we are privileged to have not only hosted the New Discovery at our launch event, but also to hear some of Sir Ranulph Fiennes’ incredible adventures.”

Driver Power 2016 car dealer satisfaction

Britain’s best car dealers 2016

Driver Power 2016 car dealer satisfactionThe Driver Power car satisfaction survey has ranked the most pleasing cars of 2016, but what about the dealers that sell and service them?

A strong performance here is key to long-term satisfaction – and Driver Power has now revealed which are Britain’s best car dealers in the eyes of owners.

Dealer satisfaction was ranked in seven categories: how helpful staff are, showroom cleanliness, the standard of work, value for money, technical knowledge, dealer attitude and the overall dealer experience.

Read on to see where your car brand sits… and let us know if you agree or disagree.

1: Renault

Driver Power 2016 car dealer satisfaction

For the first time ever, Renault takes the crown for having the most satisfying car dealers in the UK. The French brand has jumped a full 12 places in 2016: several years of refocus by its UK operations, helped by the roll-out of an all-new line-up of cars, has been rewarded with this major honour. Dealers were rated best of all for helpfulness and attitude, while value for money was also praised. And that’s not all…

2: Dacia

Driver Power 2016 car dealer satisfaction

Renault’s value-led sister brand, Dacia, is second in the dealer satisfaction rankings! Many Renault dealers also run Dacia franchises and it seems the bargain-hunting buyers of Sanderos and Dusters are enjoying the same league-topping improvements in customer service as the parent Renault brand.

3: Lexus

Driver Power 2016 car dealer satisfaction

The serial winner of UK dealer satisfaction, Lexus, is thus relegated to third place. On the face of it, this could indicate Lexus dealers are becoming a teeny bit complacent, although Driver Power 2016 does still rank them best of all for standard of workmanship and technical knowledge. And there is only 0.04% splitting the Dacia and Lexus results…

4: Toyota

Driver Power 2016 car dealer satisfaction

The parent brand of Lexus, Toyota, is next up, with a 91.71% dealership satisfaction score. That’s 2% behind Lexus but still ahead of 27 other brands in the UK. Since the big recalls of a few years back, Toyota has developed a strong reputation for excellent customer service, with some forward-thinking new innovations helping it lead many other brands.

5: Alfa Romeo

Driver Power 2016 car dealer satisfaction

The surprises in Driver Power 2016 keep on coming: 5th place is an extraordinary result for Alfa Romeo, a brand that’s been pilloried for dealer service in the UK. It’s improved a whopping 11 places in 2016 and this rewards the monumental effort by its retailers and comes just at the right time – the launch of its crucial Giulia BMW 3 Series rival is imminent…

6: Fiat

Driver Power 2016 car dealer satisfaction

Fiat dealers used to have a reputation as unenviable as Alfa Romeo, but it seems things are changing for this famous Italian brand too. New models such as the pretty 500X help, but while the ongoing success of the 500 city car is a given, it’s the strong service of the dealers that really helps keep customers coming back for more.

7: Suzuki

Driver Power 2016 car dealer satisfaction

Suzuki has leapt up the Driver Power rankings this year. In moving from rock-bottom 31st to 7th, it’s the biggest single climber in the survey. Owners are particularly impressed with the sheer value for money offered by the Japanese brand. Well done, Suzuki dealers!

8: Honda

Driver Power 2016 car dealer satisfaction

There are people who buy Hondas not because they’re Hondas, but because of the Honda dealer. Big outlets such as former Formula 1 driver Derek Warwick’s operation in Jersey are known for miles because of the great service they offer: a satisfaction score of nearly 91% is proof of that.

9: Kia

Driver Power 2016 car dealer satisfaction

Kia’s class-leading seven-year warranty is a unique proposition: those who want to fully keep it up are encouraged to visit their local dealer much longer than the new car norm. But with a top-10 satisfaction rating, it seems Kia owners are more than happy to do so.

10: Peugeot

Driver Power 2016 car dealer satisfaction

Another French brand in the top 10 for car dealer satisfaction. Peugeot’s undergone a brand revolution of its own, with the fine 308 being one of the key turnaround cars, so it’s good to see the dealer network has upped its game in support of this.

But what’s the worst car dealer work in Britain?

31/31: SEAT

Driver Power Dealer Satisfaction 2016

This is a truly terrible result for SEAT. The brand has plummeted to the bottom of the table for dealer satisfaction, with owners criticising every aspect of the experience, from helpfulness and attitude, to standard of workmanship, to cleanliness and atmosphere… the only slight consolation is a 25th-place ranking in value for money, but this is a rare not-bottom highlight in an otherwise depressing set of results for SEAT dealers.

Bugatti London car dealer opens in Mayfair

New Bugatti dealer opens in London’s Mayfair

Bugatti London car dealer opens in MayfairWith the arrival of the new Bugatti Chiron hypercar, the French luxury brand has reopened its London showroom – once again becoming Britain’s one and only new Bugatti dealer.

Developed in partnership with premium car dealer H.R. Owen Bugatti, the new Bruton Street showroom sits adjacent to the retailer’s famous Jack Barclay Bentley dealership, which is a neat fit: Bugatti and Bentley sit in the same exalted division of the Volkswagen Group.

Bugatti Automobiles S.A.S. board member Dr Stefan Brungs helped cut the ribbon to the new dealer, which is packed with past and present cars, plus art installations and sculptures.

Bugatti London car dealer opens in Mayfair

“London is one of the most important locations for Bugatti worldwide,” he said. “Many of our current customers love this city and have a residence here.

“The launch of H.R. Owen Bugatti means that we are now able to serve our exclusive clientele in a perfect setting.”

And despite the new 1,500hp Chiron’s £1.9 million price tag, the dealership may still do strong business: Bugatti today revealed 65 Veyrons are owned by customers in the UK… and 15 Brits have already placed orders for the new Chiron.

Bugatti London car dealer opens in Mayfair

Bugatti London car dealer opens in Mayfair

New Bugatti dealer opens in London's Mayfair

Bugatti London car dealer opens in MayfairWith the arrival of the new Bugatti Chiron hypercar, the French luxury brand has reopened its London showroom – once again becoming Britain’s one and only new Bugatti dealer.

Developed in partnership with premium car dealer H.R. Owen Bugatti, the new Bruton Street showroom sits adjacent to the retailer’s famous Jack Barclay Bentley dealership, which is a neat fit: Bugatti and Bentley sit in the same exalted division of the Volkswagen Group.

Bugatti Automobiles S.A.S. board member Dr Stefan Brungs helped cut the ribbon to the new dealer, which is packed with past and present cars, plus art installations and sculptures.

Bugatti London car dealer opens in Mayfair

“London is one of the most important locations for Bugatti worldwide,” he said. “Many of our current customers love this city and have a residence here.

“The launch of H.R. Owen Bugatti means that we are now able to serve our exclusive clientele in a perfect setting.”

And despite the new 1,500hp Chiron’s £1.9 million price tag, the dealership may still do strong business: Bugatti today revealed 65 Veyrons are owned by customers in the UK… and 15 Brits have already placed orders for the new Chiron.

Bugatti London car dealer opens in Mayfair

RUF GB

RUF Porsche now officially on sale in UK

RUF GBHigh-performance Porsche specialist RUF has opened its first official sales outlet in the UK, in association with Kent-based brokerage thecarspy.net.

Part of RUF’s expanding international network, founder Estonia Ruf says entry into the UK market comes at an important time “because our range of cars is now the strongest it has ever been”.

> RUF Automobile UK

RUF has been tuning Porsches for four decades now, building an envied reputation for its super-fast models that has helped it expand internationally into the USA, Canada, Singapore, Japan, China, Thailand, Taiwan and Chile.

RUF

Now the UK is the next overseas market to gain official recognition and will now sell the full range of RUF Porsches (of which every one is capable of more than 200mph), plus custom bespoke-build classic models of which the firm has an even broader choice.

The RUF Porsche 2016 new car model range comprises:

  • RUF RtR (it has 802 hp: because RUF thinks the regular Porsche 911 Turbo is too slow)
  • RUF RGT (RUF’s extreme 525hp non-turbo 911 is for those who think the GT3 RS is too subtle)
  • RUF Turbo Florio (the 645hp hyper-power turbocharged Targa)
  • RUF CTR3 Clubsport (RUF’s amazing 777hp bespoke-build Porsche Carrera GT-style mid-engined supercar)
  • RUF 3800S (RUF’s take on the Porsche Boxster and Cayman, compete with 420hp)

Mark Sekula is the new co-director of RUF Automobile UK, after being friends with the Ruf family for many years.

“Knowing what RUF is capable of producing, we are very excited to be a part of the expanding international presence. The UK has tremendous potential for RUF cars and it will be our task to establish a sound base for both pre and post-sales support for customers in this country.

“We feel that now is the perfect time for us to satisfy the needs of the high-performance and luxury sector based on our own current market experience here in the UK.”

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