AM Awards | Why They Won
Here's why the 2018 winners won
Best Social Media Strategy
CarShop - Born of a collaborative effort from members of its marketing department, CarShop’s social media strategy is heavily dictated by its social audiences.
Best Digital Campaign
TrustFord - To mark the launch of the new Fiesta last summer and to differentiate itself from other dealer groups, TrustFord created its own multi-channel campaign to complement Ford’s own coverage.
Best Dealer Website
Motor Village UK - Motor Village’s website was designed by Visarc and launched last year, following a six-month project plan.
Best Training and Development Programme
Renault Retail Group - In conjunction with Loughborough University, Renault Retail Group (RRG) introduced personal development programmes (PDPs) to boost the industry knowledge needed among its employees to progress within the company.
Excellence in Customer Service
Luscombe Motors - Luscombe Motors has a clear message for its customers: “We won’t sell you a car, we’ll help you buy one.”
Excellence in Aftersales
Swansway Group - Swansway Garages found room for improvement in its aftersales operation and drove a group-wide model to deliver excellent customer service, according to the judges.
Best Aftersales Performance
Devonshire Motors - Devonshire Motors has approached aftersales in the same way as car sales, maximising opportunity and gross profit while at the same time minimising associated costs.
Sales Team of the Year
Peter Vardy Carstore Glasgow - A new Arnold Clark centre opening on the opposite side of the street would challenge any business, the AM Awards judges said, but the 90 staff at Peter Vardy CarStore Glasgow have put teamwork and innovative thinking together to meet the threat.
Used Car of the Year
Kia Sportage - Kia’s standard-setting seven-year warranty and the ever-growing appeal of SUVs continue to cement the Sportage as a star performer for used car retailers.
New Car of the Year
Volvo XC60 - Volvo’s successor to the popular XC60 proved to be worth the wait when it launched in 2017, with the second generation of the SUV attracting praise from numerous quarters.
Franchise Partner of the Year
Suzuki - The AM Awards judges affirmed the reader vote by naming Suzuki as Franchise Partner of the Year, recognising its positive reputation among franchisees.
Best Used Car Performance
Drayton Kia - A 38-day average stock turn, a return-on-investment of 141% and a near-perfect customer service score put Drayton Kia ahead of its rivals in the Best Used Car Performance category.
Best Fleet Operation
Norton Way - Our fleet business is totally dedicated to serving our fleet customers. This is done by listening to their business challenges and then responding with efficient, effective and innovative solutions,” said Norton Way Corporate Sales in its winning awards submission.
Most Improved Dealership
Infiniti Newcastle - The challenges for this Vertu Motors centre have been considerable. The immaturity of Infiniti means it does not have the budget to build the brand and so the dealership’s local market did not know of its existence, plus a lack of new car volumes meant it had no walk-in traffic. This, in turn, meant it had no chance of building an aftersales business.
New Retailer of the Year
Porsche Centre Wolverhampton - This new-build dealership opened in April 2016 with no customer database and a workforce at around half the planned level, but within 18 months has become one of the high performers in its franchised network.
Devonshire Motors - "Micro-management” has allowed Devonshire Motors’ managing director Nathan Tomlinson to lead his team to a return-on-sale figure of near 4% (against a Mitsubishi network average of 1.5% in 2017), a new car market share of 6% (with a franchise that has less than 1% nationally), and aftersales absorption of 105%.
Best Retail Group (up to & including 10 sites)
Hatfields - This dealer group puts customers at the heart of the process and reaps the rewards of doing so. Its efficiency and earnings are well above the industry average, and the AM Awards judges praised Hatfields for being a consistently strong local hero.
Best Retail Group (more than 10 sites)
Sytner - It has a strategy for success that keeps evolving.” That statement formed part of this winner’s praise from the awards judging panel, in a very strongly contested category. Other judges’ statements following a review of its audit included “an extraordinary group” and “head and shoulders ahead”.
Digital Retailer of the Year
Rockar - Rockar’s growth trajectory and ambition has shown no sign of abating as the omni-channel retail specialist continues to fuse an online sales platform with new manufacturer partners and high-street stores.
Dealer Principal/General Manager of the Year
Neil Hodgson, Perrys Worksop - The recognition of his team’s contribution to the success of a dual-franchise dealership reflected the ethos that brought Perrys general manager Neil Hodgson to the attention of the AM Awards’ judges.
Manufacturer of the Year
Volvo - The evolution of Volvo’s growing range and its efforts to distinguish its retail network from the premium market establishment earned the AM judges’ approval in 2018.
Retailer of the Year
Sytner - It’s a well run, highly regarded, top-performing, premium-brand-retailing powerhouse that now adds the AM Award for Retailer of the Year to its large trophy cabinet, alongside various accolades from manufacturer partners and The Sunday Times Best Companies To Work For.
Business Leader of the Year
Darren Edwards, Chief Executive, Sytner - He is an energetic, understated leader, who has come up through the ranks and is responsible for steering the UK’s largest car dealer group past £5 billion worth of annual sales and for motivating a workforce numbering more than 8,000 people.
AM Hall of Fame
Jack Tordoff - Throughout his distinguished career, Jack Tordoff MBE has demonstrated a passion for hard work that has rubbed off on those around him at JCT600.