Lotus retailer network ‘to be 75% new’
13 July 2020
Lotus “needs a lot more dealers” and is actively seeking a “world class” network of UK retailers, CEO Phil Popham exclusively told Auto Retail Agenda. “We want to double the size of the dealer network.”
Mr Popham revealed he expects the future network of retailers to be 75% new compared to today, through a combination of expansion and replacement of current retailers with new ones. Some retailers, he explained, are unwilling or unable to commit to the necessary level of investment.
“We are a premium brand whose customers expect great service, especially in aftersales,” said Mr Popham. “We want our retailers to be distinctive – we do not prescribe identikit showrooms but we are prescriptive in terms of processes, systems and people. The dealers we are taking on now fully understand this.” Dealer groups, he revealed, are proactively contacting Lotus.
Mr Popham, who is overseeing a “fully funded” 10-year strategy called Vision 80, says the firm is now planning the future service model for the electrified cars that will follow next year’s new sports car – which he says will be the final pure internal combustion engine Lotus.
“With electrification, the whole model is different, and we’re currently working out what services retailers will need to offer, and what equipment they’ll have to invest in.” Many owners of the upcoming £2 million Evija electric hypercar, however, are expected to send their car back to the Hethel HQ for servicing, rather than their retailer – “even those from other countries”.