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Three new dealerships for Lexus in 2016

Social network: New standalone dealerships in western Sydney and on the NSW central coast will tap into rapidly expanding population areas.

Lexus looks to outer-suburb ‘wealth corridors’ for three new dealerships in 2016

Lexus logo27 Nov 2015

LEXUS Australia has announced plans to open three new dealerships in 2016, bringing its national total to 27, before adding yet another site in 2017.

The company’s chief executive Sean Hanley told journalists at the launch of the RX in Sydney that the dealerships would be located in what he termed “emerging wealth corridors”.

The first to open will be Lexus of Macarthur, about an hour south-west of the Sydney CBD near the town of Camden, in May 2016. It will be followed by a second standalone dealership in Toowoomba, north of Brisbane.

A third retail front will be opened in Sydney’s northern beaches.

“Mario Kordovolos, who has an association with Toyota, is going to build the standalone Lexus dealership in Macarthur,” said Mr Hanley. “They're building that as we sit here, but it's just going to take a bit longer.”

Mr Kordovolos is the principal of Clintons Toyota, part of a western Sydney dealership empire that stretches back to 1945. The new 8000-square metre site is in the suburb of Gregory Hills.

The other new standalone dealership will be the second for Ian Weigh, who currently runs a Toyota and Lexus dealership in Rockhampton.

An additional dealership will be part of Lexus of Chatswood, on Sydney’s north shore, in 2016, though its location is yet to be disclosed.

“It'll be an existing dealership through our Lexus of Chatswood Group from the McCarroll Group, who will open a significant branch operation in the northern beaches of Sydney,” said Mr Hanley.

A standalone dealership for Gosford, about halfway between Sydney and Newcastle on the NSW central coast, is also confirmed for 2017.

“I've got a bit of expansion happening, but it's important we're very mindful of our existing dealer network and their profitability, and we're very mindful of the customer experience,” said Mr Hanley. “It’s important that we appoint dealers that completely understand our culture of customer experience and the Lexus way.”

He indicated that the dealer groups approached Lexus. “We go through a very, very strong criteria of selection over a fairly long period. These just didn't happen yesterday,” he said. “Some of these have been a year in the making.

“We clearly need to get into the northern beaches of Sydney because the only service there that we currently have is in Sydney or Chatswood, so there's a fair gap there. We've got a gap between the northern suburbs of Sydney and Newcastle, so we have a fairly significant market and buyer group around the Gosford/Central Coast area.”

Mr Hanley likened the recent opening of the brand’s Springwood dealership, which is located in the southern suburbs of Brisbane, to the new Macarthur dealership’s catchment area.

“Western Sydney for us, as in Springwood and Brisbane, offer a very unique opportunity because part of our marketing strategy has been to appeal to those people who are stepping up from mainstream brands to luxury,” he said.

“We want them to consider Lexus as affordable. We call them ‘step-up’ buyers, and we believe that the western suburbs of Sydney and the southern suburbs of Brisbane, which is Springwood, is the heart of the step-up buyers. These are emerging wealth corridors of these great cities and we need to be represented there.”

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