A LANDMARK dealership in Rotherham is ditching its Honda and Mitsubishi franchises in favour of Renault and Dacia.
Stoneacre Motor Group’s ‘Mushroom Garage’ is undergoing a £1m refurbishment that is due to be completed next year, with the French and Romanian brands moving in and sales of the Japanese marques being covered by the group’s sites in Sheffield and Chesterfield.
Aftersales for Honda and Mitsubishi will still be handled by the distinctive Doncaster Road showroom, which is famous for displaying a vehicle on its roof.
Stoneacre is also eyeing up other franchises for its portfolio.
Franchise and development director Philip Wade told Car Dealer Magazine: ‘Since the acquisition of Mill Volvo last October, we have been busy consolidating the business and working to get other franchises on board. I am hoping we will have some news of this by the end of the year or early 2020.
‘We have relinquished the Honda franchise at Mushroom Garage as it was always a satellite for Chesterfield and we can handle all Honda sales from either Chesterfield or Sheffield. It was just extra unnecessary expense and Honda have always had the site marked for release once we had secured a new franchise. We retain the Honda aftersales agreement so we can continue to service Honda customers locally.
‘We have a similar issue with Mitsubishi, as they are represented in Sheffield and Chesterfield too and the area has been divided between those sites. We also retain the aftersales agreement for Mitsubishi.
‘We have a mutual agreement with Renault/Dacia to extend our representation with them and have embarked on a £1,000,000 investment in the existing site to accommodate those franchises. It is our intention to retain the basis of this iconic building whilst extending full Renault/Dacia style cladding to provide the most impact when driving past.’
He added: ‘The inside of the building is being totally reformed and modernised to incorporate the latest electric vehicle technology. The refurbishment is under way and we are expecting completion by year end, although it may be early in 2020.’
The Rotherham dealership was bought by Stoneacre from the Gilder Group in July 2017. Stoneacre Motor Group was established in 1994 by Richard Teatum, when he bought a bankrupt second-hand Scunthorpe-based car dealership following the sale of his first company for £10m. The family-run business now represents 24 brands across more than 50 locations in England and Wales.
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