Lockdown used car business opens first ever showroom after growth from owner’s driveway

  • Klassified Cars in Rugby opens up its first ever showroom
  • Business began during lockdown when the owner started selling cars from his driveway
  • Bosses Steve Kempster started out with just £2,000 at the beginning of the pandemic

Time 11:49 am, October 30, 2023

A used car dealer has gone from selling vehicles on a driveway during lockdown to opening up its very first state-of-the-art showroom.

Klassified Cars began when experienced salesman Steve Kempster lost his job at the start of the pandemic and was left in desperate need of income.

After assessing his options, the 34-year-old decided to pursue a long-held dream of running of own used car business and began selling cars from his home in Rugby.

He spent his only £2,000 savings on two vehicles to get the venture off the ground and has not looked back since.

A few months later, he was joined by best friend and fellow dealer, Richard Turrall and the pair set about turning Klassified Cars into a successful business.

Three years down the line, the pair have reached a major milestone and are celebrating the opening of their new home.

Reflecting on the journey, Kempster said: ‘I had £2,000 in savings and I invested it all in two cars.

‘At the same time, I built a website myself, started an account with Auto Trader and registered the business. I made the most of every moment and managed to sell 10 cars within the first month, all from my driveway.

‘There’s not many car salespeople that can say they worked from home, but the low overheads enabled me to invest in more stock in the early days and I focused on showcasing my range online – which worked particularly well during the pandemic.’

The new site, on Rugby’s Somers Road, was in a state of disrepair when the entrepreneurs took over earlier this year,

However, after four months of hard work, the pair have transformed the unit into their dream car shop.

Last Sunday (Oct 22) the duo held an open day for family, friends and customers and the business is now thriving in its new setting.

Specialising in German brands including Audi, BMW, Mercedes and Volkswagen, the pair are looking forward to what the future has to offer.

Turrall, 33, said: ‘As car enthusiasts ourselves, we always wanted our own venue where the vehicles were the star of the show.

‘Our Rugby unit is exactly what we were after – its industrial décor mixes perfectly with the modern artwork we’ve installed, creating a cool yet inviting space for our customers.

‘At Klassified Cars, the customer experience is paramount, and our new showroom has helped us elevate that offering. We pride ourselves on providing exceptional service, transparent pricing and tailored solutions, ensuring a hassle-free and enjoyable car buying process.’

Success down to hard work

Looking back at the last three years, Kempster admits things have not always been busy but puts his and Turrall’s success down to a strong work ethic.

He is now enjoying the benefits of being his own boss but says the pair are certainly not taking anything for granted.

He added: ‘People keep asking me how we’ve managed to achieve so much in such a short space of time and I only have two words: hard work. It really is as simple as that.

‘From buying the first couple of cars to doing most of the renovations to the showroom ourselves, we’ve constantly given it our all.

‘I think our open day was the first time we both stood back and took it all in. We’re both so proud, but certainly don’t take anything for granted and we really want expand the company further in the future, offering a wider range of cars to our growing customer base.

‘If anyone is thinking of following their passion and setting up a business they’ve always dreamed of, I would say go for it. Being your own boss is incredibly rewarding and I am so lucky to be doing what I truly love day in, day out.’

Jack Williams's avatar

Jack joined the Car Dealer team in 2021 as a staff writer. He previously worked as a national newspaper journalist for BNPS Press Agency. He has provided news and motoring stories for a number of national publications including The Sun, The Times and The Daily Mirror.

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