Motorline Lexus Tunbridge WellsMotorline Lexus Tunbridge Wells


Constellation loses all of Marshall’s Toyota sites, ANOTHER director and there’s changes at a Volvo dealership

  • As Marshall sheds Toyota sites Steven Eagell picks up 10 sites, FRF two and Listers two
  • Constellation Automotive Group-owned dealer also loses new Volvo sales from showroom
  • And the fourth Marshall director has quit the business in a little over 12 months

Time 7:16 am, July 3, 2023

Constellation Automotive Group has lost all of Marshall Motor Group’s Toyota and Lexus franchises with the sites transferring to new partners at the weekend.

As exclusively revealed by Car Dealer Magazine in January, sources said Marshall had been ‘forced’ into the sale by the car manufacturer.

In a statement on the dealer group’s Twitter account, Marshall Motor Group said all its Toyota and Lexus sites had transferred to new owners on July 1.

The statement said this was after a ‘strategic review of Toyota’s representation’. The Marshall Toyota twitter account is now ‘inactive’.

Customers of Marshall’s Welwyn Garden City Volvo dealer were also told, in an email, that from July 1 its new car sales would cease. It plans to carry on as a used site and an official Volvo repair centre.

Meanwhile, Marshall Motor Group’s HR director Joanne Moxon also stepped down as a director on June 30. A notice on Companies House sad she had ‘resigned’.

Moxon is the fourth senior director to leave the Constellation Automotive Group-run business in little over a year since it left the Stock Market.

Constellation bought the car dealer group in a £325m deal last year when it swooped on the listed business. 

CEO Daksh Gupta left in May 2022, CFO Richard Blumberger in December and group counsel Stephen Jones in March.

Constellation Automotive Group has been approached for comment.

Marshall Toyota

The statement was posted on the Marshall Toyota Twitter account

Steven Eagell has picked up 10 of the Marshall dealerships – in Ashford, Bromsgrove, Canterbury, Gatwick, Hereford, Horsham, Stourbridge, Tunbridge Wells and Worcester.

Cardiff and Newport have transferred to FRF Motors and Listers has picked up Bristol (Cribbs Causeway) and Bristol South.

David Kendrick, CEO of UHY Hacker Young, said: ‘This is a deal that has been in the offing for some time and just shows the OEM does carry some weight when it comes to large group’s change of ownership. 

‘Steven Eagell is now a serious player in the UK with a substantial market share, plus great bolt on deals for FRF and Listers.’

The deal takes the number of Toyota and Lexus sites Steven Eagell now owns to 44 – the largest in Europe – after starting the group with just one site, sponsored by the manufacturer, in May 2002.

In 2021, Steven Eagell’s business turned over £702m and made profit before tax of £20.6m. And in the Car Dealer Top 100 list of most profitable businesses last year, the firm placed 19th.

Eagell said: ‘We are delighted. They are a great fit for us geographically and have a track record of delivering good all-round performance.

‘A core strength of the new businesses is the existing management team and we look forward to working with them to further develop best practice across the group.

‘Our initial priority will be the integration of the new business into the group, with minimum disruption. We’re very much looking forward to welcoming the new team members and working with them to continue to provide first-class service to both existing and new customers.’

Toyota GB has been approached for comment.

Marshall Motor Group bought 19 Toyota and Lexus dealerships as part of the £64.5m acquisition of Motorline in October 2021 and was the second biggest partner for the Japanese brand behind Steven Eagell.

Those dealerships made up nearly half of all the sites Marshall bought from Motorline and was a significant reason for doing the deal.

At the time, Marshall said it was ‘proud’ to be representing Toyota and Lexus for the first time.

In an interview with Car Dealer, which you can watch below, Daksh Gupta, the CEO at the time, said: ‘Toyota is a phenomenal brand and the biggest car manufacturer in the world.

‘I have been in the industry for 28 years and at a senior level for 20 and I have never seen any manufacturer approve a transaction of that scale or of that number of businesses. Normally you’d only see four or five dealerships move across.’

Last week, Toyota was named the best car manufacturer to represent in Car Dealer Power 2023, moving up this year’s table by seven places.

Find out why in the video below, which will start at the relevant section.

James Baggott's avatar

James is the founder and editor-in-chief of Car Dealer Magazine, and CEO of parent company Baize Group. James has been a motoring journalist for more than 20 years writing about cars and the car industry.

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