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Motability spurs growth for Chevrolet UK

Date: 10 February 2012   |   Author: Hugh Hunston

Chevrolet Orlando

Chevrolet's 33% growth in fleet sales last year was driven mainly by the GM brand more than doubling its Motability business, although the company's UK boss Mark Terry claimed that the disability mobility charity is "really a retail channel".

Terry described the Orlando crossover as "well received in fleet in general and by Motability in particular". It generated the bulk of the 3000 Motability sales, which in turn contributed to a 5817-unit fleet tally.

This resulted in the business element of Chevrolet's sales climbing from 32% in 2010 to

46% last year, although Terry emphasised that the Japanese tsunami had limited Orlando supplies due to shortages of diesel engine electronic components. To meet Motability and leasing demand Orlandos were transferred from the retail sector last year.

Terry added: "Motability is about customers who have to go through the personal buying process. The SMMT categorises it as fleet business but to me it is really retail."

To raise Chevrolet's recognition and consideration levels, including for fleet lists, Chevrolet is planning a multi-channel media "super push".

Terry admitted that "people remain confused about what Chevrolet means in the UK. Even if we are a 100-year-old brand they think of Corvettes, Camaros and Transformers."

Terry expected Chevrolet's fleet position to be consolidated with the new Aveo supermini, the Cruze hatchback and the diesel-only Malibu rival for Hyundai's i40, which is due to market next year.