John Patrick Prestige Cars has recently been awarded the prestigious title of Regional Jaguar Dealer of the Year. In selecting the Dealer of the Year winners, Jaguar Land Rover Australia takes into account a diverse set of criteria; these include sales performance, customer satisfaction, facilities presentation and training.
John Patrick Prestige Cars opened in 1992; how has the industry changed for new cars over the years?
There has been a massive change in our industry over the years. Currently Australia has got 63 manufacturers for a market of about 1 million vehicles per year; whereas, America has got 35 manufacturers for a market of 13.5 million. It’s a growing industry here in Australia, and we have seen huge changes throughout our time in business in Port Macquarie. It’s just incredible to imagine so many players in our market.
You have positioned yourself with prestige brands. Tell us why in particular?
We wanted to be a niche market business; we didn’t want to go to the mass market. Although a couple of the franchises we stock have become more mass market, they are still high quality products. Basically, we just wanted to deal with really good, high quality vehicles.
Tell us about the prestige brands at the John Patrick showroom …
We have Suzuki and Honda, both Japanese brands, Isuzu Ute, Peugeot, which is our French brand, and the popular Land Rover and Jaguar.
John Patrick Prestige has recently picked up the Regional Dealer of the Year award for Jaguar, which is a huge achievement. Is this the first time you’ve won this award?
We have won the Regional Dealer award before with other franchises, but we hadn’t won it with Jag – so this is really exciting. A lot of people think this award is geared towards how many vehicles you sell of that particular brand, but it’s actually about overall customer satisfaction and servicing, taking in feedback from customer surveys, getting good results and ensuring brand signage and fit out are all correctly positioned at our dealership.
Explain some of the standards you have put into place to be able to meet such high customer service expectations.
We strive to achieve a very personal service at John Patrick, where we know everybody by their first name and customers are not just a number in our system. We don’t have a huge volume of Jaguar clients, being a small area compared to the metro areas, and there aren’t a huge number of Jaguar dealers in Australia either, so we really need to make sure we are meeting all of the standards and performing well for the brand.
What has cemented Jaguar as a prestige brand over the years?
The Jaguar brand is iconic. The same as people know Coca Cola or similar brand names, Jaguar is also an icon for many. These brands have an aspirational effect on people that a lot of other brands don’t. We find that customers will come in and say to us, “I have always wanted to own a Jag”. It is always rewarding to give customers that satisfaction of obtaining their dream car.
What can we look forward to from Jaguar over the next two years?
The new ‘F Type’, which is the new Jaguar sports car, is to be released in August this year. Our dealership will only get one for the year; that’s how high the demand has been internationally, throughout the US and Europe. The great part about Jaguars nowadays is the pricing. It has decreased a lot, due to the value of the Australian dollar and the fact that they are now producing and selling more cars. The new XF Jaguar goes for only $74K driveaway, which is a great price for a Jag, making owning one of these prestigious vehicles more of a reality for customers.
How will you be celebrating your win of the Regional Jaguar Dealership of the Year?
Of course, it will be about our customers and service. We have extended our standard 3 year warranty to 5 years, on all of the Jaguar cars we have available throughout March and April.
The team and I are really just enjoying the recognition and respect that Dealer of the Year gives, and we are so proud to have this award – which justifies all of the hard work we have been putting in.
What is coming up during 2013 for John Patrick Prestige Cars?
We are establishing another car yard at the old wrecking site on Hastings River Drive, where we will stock between 80 -100 used cars. I believe it is important to keep growing along with Port Macquarie, which is getting larger and larger. It has taken twenty years to be able to establish another yard, and we are looking forward to many more years to come, growing with the area and continuing to provide an outstanding level of service and choice to our customers.
This article can be found in issue 88 of Greater Port Macquarie Focus