MOSCOW, Russia, March 15, 2016. – Ford Sollers announces creation of a new chain of specialized dealerships for sale and after-sales service of light commercial vehicles and specialized vehicles based on Ford automobiles. The new dealerships will have a new branding and will be named Transit centers. The new strategy will allow offering to customers a new level of service both in sales and after-sales and will strengthen Ford Sollers’ position on the LCV market.
The first dealerships of the new chain will be opened in the first quarter of 2016. The company plans to open a total of 50 transit centers this year.
The created chain will include both existing and new Ford dealerships that will be selected through a tender in accordance with the high standards developed by Ford for Transit centers. Preference will be given to dealerships with extensive experience in corporate sales and necessary infrastructure. The personnel of new dealerships will receive specialized training on maintenance and sale of commercial vehicles and specialized versions and will be able to offer the best customized solutions.
“This strategy and special focus on Ford Transit customers in Europe allowed us to move from fourth to first place in the market of light commercial vehicles within a few years. We believe this market to be strategically important in Russia as well and plan to significantly strengthen our positions through new products and quality service,” said Mark Ovenden, President and CEO, Ford Sollers.
“Among out Ford Transit customers are public agencies and representatives of large Russian and foreign businesses who find it important to have customized solutions to fitting out of vehicles and a uniform level of service in all of Russia’s key regions,” states Adil Shirinov, First Vice President and CEO, Ford Sollers.
Ford became the most popular brand of commercial vehicles in Europe according to the 2015 results, having occupied the first position thanks to its upgraded and expanded Transit lineup. In 2015, within the framework of the long-term strategy for the expansion of the Ford model range tailored to Russian customers, Ford Sollers entered new segments of the market of commercial vehicles and inaugurated an extensive lineup of shuttle buses and chassis trucks and an array of other special vehicles designed with the support of Ford Sollers’ R&D center.
The Ford Transit share among foreign brands of commercial vehicles in Russia grew from 10% in January of 2015 to 14% in December of 2015, while the total share of the market of foreign brands in the segment of commercial vehicles demonstrated negative dynamics during that period and decreased from 47% to 30%. In 2015, Ford Sollers doubled the volume of sold Ford Transit special versions against 2014. The share of special versions in the total volume of Ford Transit vehicles sold in 2015 reached 30%.
The popularity of medium-duty vehicles in Russia keeps growing steadily. These vehicles are widely used in the area of passenger services and transport logistics and are popular among companies dealing with online sales, construction and repairs. Special transport based on commercial vehicles plays an important social role and is utilized as ambulance vehicles, school buses and vehicles for various government services. Today, the full gamut of special versions of vehicles based on the Ford Transit includes more than 25 types of special and social transport models. The company keeps on expanding the range of special versions based on the Ford Transit and the palette of body colors available for ordering by corporate customers.