FORD QVM STATUS FOR MACKWORTH CONVERSIONS
Mackworth Vehicle Conversions, the specialist van and truck body builder and modifier in Derby, has been awarded Qualified Vehicle Modifier (QVM) status with Ford Light Commercial Vehicles. Simon Robinson, Chief Engineer at Ford’s Special Vehicle Engineering operation, handed over the coveted QVM Certificate to Mackworth Conversions’ General Manager, Andrew Kent, in a ceremony at Ford’s Dunton Technical Centre in Essex. The award comes as the company, based in Mackworth on the outskirts of Derby, has taken its annual sales figure past 3000 vehicle modifications for the first time. Peter Glover, managing director at Mackworth Conversions said, “This is an exciting time for us, with sales growing fast. This growth has been driven by the quality and dedication Andrew and the team have put into our work over recent years, and this recognition of our high standards by Ford is proof of that. We have major expansion plans for the very near future and this gives us further impetus as we prepare for those.”
General Manager, Andrew Kent, added, “We have a great team here, very dedicated and highly skilled, so this is very much down to them and the hard work they put in. Customers know our standards and we are pleased to have them recognised by a company as globally important as Ford.”
The Mackworth Conversions business is part of Motus Holdings (UK). It was created in 2011 by the merger of an existing business, Mackworth Bodyworks with the newly acquired Mix Vehicles, specifically to focus on LCV and HGV body conversions and new builds. Originally part of the group’s Imperial Commercials Division, it was later migrated into its own division, within which it also operates the UK’s largest genuine Tail Lift Parts distribution and support company, and a two-site commercial vehicle Parts Factor operation incorporating a parts recycling business. Though its sales are drawn from across Great Britain, Mackworth Conversions also handles conversions and body-building projects for both the van and truck sales operations of Imperial Commercials, as well as the van business of another Motus company in the UK, the Pentagon Motor Group. “Though the core business has been around for quite a while, we’re still the relative new-comers in the Group,” says Peter Glover, “There are many well-established bodybuilder/modifier relationships in both Imperial and Pentagon, so while we are always happy to be involved, our main business volumes derive direct from operators and other groups.”
Pentagon Motor Group to expand with Ford
Pentagon Motor Group, which operates 38 franchise outlets, from 23 sites across the East Midlands, North West, South Yorkshire and Lincolnshire, has announced its intention to acquire three dealerships from TrustFord.
The three Ford sites, at Warrington, St Helens and Runcorn, were formerly branded as Polar Ford, before being moved in to the Ford owned TrustFord retail group. All three will be rebranded as Pentagon Ford.
Speaking on behalf of Pentagon Motor Group, managing director, David Lewis, said, “We are very pleased to be adding Ford to the Pentagon group and working together with TrustFord this promises to be a smooth transition.
“We are keen to ensure that all current staff on the three sites transfer happily to Pentagon Ford and we will do all that we can to ensure this is the case. For customers it will be business as usual”
Whilst these will be Pentagon Motor Groups first Ford dealerships, Pentagon’s parent company Motus Holdings (UK), already has Ford Transit Centres, at Grimsby and Halesowen as part of its Imperial Commercials Division.
The formal completion of the deal is expected to take place on December 31st, and speaking for TrustFord, Stuart Foulds, Chairman and CEO, added, “As part of our ongoing review of our property portfolio we are in negotiation with the Pentagon Motor Group to sell them our Warrington, St Helens and Runcorn dealerships. All colleagues located in these businesses have been informed and will be transferring over to Pentagon so customers can continue to experience the same high levels of service for all their vehicle sales and servicing needs.’’
Rob Truscott, CEO of Motus in the UK, said, “As a Group, we are committed to growth. Not growth at any cost, but where we see a real opportunity at sensible investment levels, and the acquisition of these three important Ford sites delivers on this for us.”
Motus is Southern Africa’s newest, leading and largest vehicle group, formed through the consolidation of Imperial’s entire vehicle import, distribution, retail, financial services, rental and aftermarket parts businesses.
Imperial has announced it’s strategic intent to unbundle and separately list Motus on the JSE.
PENTAGON SETS THE PACE FOR MAZDA
Pentagon Motor Group’s recent investment in its Mazda showroom and customer support facilities in Lincoln has shown early and positive results. Pentagon took over the Mazda territory in 2015, and in late 2017 completed a complete refurbishment of the unit on its multi-franchise Lincoln site to the full Mazda CI specification.
Since completion of the work, the team has seen market share grow significantly and its services ranked at the top of Mazda’s Customer Service League table for the four months ending on July 31st. Richard Wagstaffe, general manager of the dealership, said, “It’s a real boost for the whole site and my Mazda team in particular. As a team we work hard and take a genuine pride in the Mazda brand and our new facility, together with the whole ethos of supporting the customer. As a result, our market share locally has grown by almost 50% this year, and we are growing steadily. Perhaps more important, both for the brand and our Lincoln business, customer response to the new facility and the people who make it work has been really exciting. To have come top of the Mazda Customer Service League so soon after the upgrade is a real achievement and gives us all something to work on for the future.”
David Lewis, managing director of the Pentagon Motor Group, a part of Motus Holdings (UK) Ltd., said, “We have two strong multi-franchise sites in Lincoln, with Mazda joined by Citroen, Mitsubishi, Renault and Vauxhall, plus our Van Centre, and the latest refurbishments and upgrades have added to service levels and experience for local customers when looking for their next new or used vehicles. The success currently being enjoyed by Richard and his team is a fair reflection of the hard work they have put in – and of the value to be gained from investing in our Lincoln sites. Mazda are happy…. we are happy!”