SEAT UK has launched its first ‘Store’ in the UK at Lakeside in Essex.
Opened in association with franchise partner Group 1 Automotive, the firm’s first store concept gives the Barcelona-based brand further coverage in the London and M25 area plus access to Lakeside’s 26 million annual customers.
The 150 sq m outlet has three display cars plus an outdoor Experience Centre housing an additional 16 Seat models that can be test-driven. A total of 13 permanent, full-time local jobs have been created.
Customers can research Seat models via eight 22-inch digital info ‘hubs’, where they can also configure and explore financing options, arrange test drives for then or later, and get their trade-in car valued. There are also a number of 70-inch ultra HD screens highlighting the brand’s latest award wins, offers and product features. People can also seek help from Seat experts in the store.
Test drives can be taken unaccompanied, and the Seat Store will have a number of models available for delivery seven days from the time of order, subject to finance approval.
Seat UK director Richard Harrison said: ‘Our new store is a world first for us, and I’m delighted to be working with Group 1 Automotive to deliver such an exciting venture.
‘We are passionate about finding ways to make it even easier for people to discover and fall in love with our award-winning range of cars. With a great team of product experts on board, a stunning new store and Experience Centre, and the all-new Seat Ateca also launching next week, I am sure the millions of shoppers visiting Lakeside are in for a real treat!’
Darren Guiver, deputy managing director at Group 1 Automotive, said: ‘We’re really excited to be the first car retail store at Lakeside and working closely with the Seat team to deliver this exciting new concept.’
The manufacturer is following in the footsteps of Hyundai and JLR, which have embarked on similar retail forays elsewhere.
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