Newark is the third used truck site in Keltruck’s 19 locations. The used stock portfolio is shared across the group and Keltruck’s other used truck sites in West Bromwich and Cross Hands in Carmarthenshire, but Newark will look to focus on the local area and the high proportion of owner-drivers that the dealership regularly serves.
Speaking about the site improvements, branch manager Phil Haywood says: “It makes sense for Newark to be a used truck site for Keltruck because of its location. We are the most eastern site in the group, with the other used truck sites being right in the heart of the Midlands and to the west in Wales.”
The Newark site is also unusual in that it already houses three bodyshop bays and a 45ft paintshop oven which Haywood says makes it the ideal candidate for a used vehicle operation.
“The bodyshop side really appeals to me,” says Haywood, who has worked at five different Keltruck locations during his 29 years with the company. “Most used vehicles require painting, so it makes sense to have it on the back of a bodyshop. It makes us a bit more diverse for when customers do want something a bit special.”
Newark previously sold a small number of used trucks, but a toughening economic climate as well as limited space saw Keltruck cease sales at the site. The refurbishment, however, which involved changing warehousing space into offices and a reception area has led to a dramatic overhaul of the premises. Driver welfare facilities have been introduced to the side of the reception desk, with toilet and shower facilities as well as coffee and water machines in a private waiting area. Above the entrance is office space for staff including a meeting room and kitchenette.
Across the yard sits the old reception area, which adjoins Newark’s four workshop bays, and is currently undergoing a major refit. When complete the technicians will have their own changing room and kitchen area as well as a tool room to store all of the official Scania tools away from the workshop floor.
Outside space has been cleared to make room for the new used truck parking area. Although current plans only extend as far as eight vehicles at any one time on the site, Haywood says there is possibility for more.
“Although it is small at the moment we do have the ability to increase the stock. We were going to put a barrier in, originally, but we didn’t want to limit ourselves. Eight’s a good number for now, but if it expands it expands.”
For now, Keltruck Newark will continue its new truck sales while gradually growing its used truck business. The aim is that over time its once new vehicles will eventually find their way back to the dealership where the used truck operation can remarket them to customers looking for secondhand vehicles.