Ford considers Vignale mobile servicing offer
23 March 2016
Fleet best-selling brand Ford is looking into ways to boost service levels for those driving models from its upmarket new Vignale range, with the prospect of a 'concierge service' and mobile servicing.
"One of the things we're rolling out at the moment is mobile servicing. We come to you," said Andy Barratt, Ford's UK chairman and managing director. "I think there is no reason why we wouldn't go out and do a mobile service on a Vignale," he continued.
Ford is already "quite capable" of providing mobile servicing to owners, Barratt stated. "It may be while you're at work and there'll be a place we can do it, so that come-to-you piece of our business is becoming more and more important."
With many business drivers becoming increasingly time-poor, Ford must become increasingly efficient to help maximise owners' mobility, Barratt added, with the Ford boss seeing the scope of going into offices and servicing multiple fleet cars in one sitting.
The company already has a mobile van servicing offering in place, according to Barratt, with eight servicing LCVs operating around the M25, "and we're starting to roll them out further around the country as we go". Ford hopes to eventually run this service nationwide.
On the commercial vehicle side, the manufacturer also offers a unique "load continuation" offering, said Barratt, where in the event of a breakdown the AA will arrive and follow the van's intended route, making deliveries or collections as initially intended, before taking the vehicle for repair, if it can't fix the machine at the roadside.
"Everything we do is geared to being in the mindset and the space of the business operator," claimed Barratt. "The most important thing is that you don't stop generating your revenue, so if we can keep you going we will do that and we will drive your revenue and then get you to where you need to be."
Meanwhile, Ford still sees a key role for its Vignale range in retaining existing drivers and winning over those who may be considering premium brands. "We're very, very good at bringing in drivers into Ford, we're very good at growing them through the Ford brand, but as they reach a level within their organisation or social standing, they decide that they want to go to another brand," said Barratt. Vignale offers the opportunity to keep customers for another cycle within the Ford brand, he added.
Meanwhile, Vignale sales are currently split 50:50 between historic Ford owners and conquest drivers, according to the Ford boss, with a particularly strong interest from SMEs.