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Purchasing a new Kia Sportswagon GT S-Line was my first experience last week of using a Kia dealership. I came across the dealership by using the very impressive Car Wow internet scheme which promises to deliver 6 quotes for your specified vehicle within 24 hours. Gavin from Kia Carlisle quickly responded with the second best quote accompanied by the promise of a test drive. The test drive sold me the car and because Kia Carlisle were prepared to compete with the best quote, a deal was quickly done. My first impressions of the dealership were that the staff were very friendly and approachable and the vehicle handover went smoothly.


I'm not sure whether this dealership is typical of most Kia dealerships the site doubles up with Mazda. I find it difficult not to make comparisons with the Toyota dealership which I have used for the last 10 years in the North East. It is clear that Toyota have invested very heavily in their dealership premises which are always light and airy. There is a "meet and greet" person to welcome you when you walk in the door, and the customer waiting area is really just about as good as business class airport departure lounge. There are other features as well, for example the hand over of a new car will often involve an "unveiling" ceremony, a short video of your car as a keepsake and other small touches which enhance the buying experience. Kia have a long way to go I suspect in getting to this level and will need to incentivise their dealerships to take this on board if they want to move up in the brand stakes.


Anyway, got a bit side tracked there, and would certainly buy from this dealer again.
 

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The 3 Toyota dealers I have tried locally have all had fancy showrooms, meet and greet people and a nice seating area. But they need this seating area. You can wait for ages waiting to be attended to after the meet and greet person has sat you down. And its not because they are busy, there have been no buyers or salespeople in the showroom but either on the mezzanine or in the office its easy to see the staff chatting and drinking coffee while you wait. Then when they eventually come to see you they insist on showing you a car you don't want and when they take you out on a test drive its about 3 or 4 miles after telling you its illegal to have a buyer in the passenger seat.

Kia dealers from my experience tend to be no nonsense sites with no nonsense staff. They want to sell you a car and that's it. They give you the keys and tell you to take it for a couple of hours.

No wonder you see very few Toyotas locally yet loads of Kia's.
 

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kia carlisle are no longer trading, they have gone in to administration a few weeks ago. all of their premises are now vacant. everything has gone.
 

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I think the old senior management are trying to raise funds to buy it from the Administrators.

Apparently the second hand part of the business was doing well, but the new car bit not so.

I know the old Sales Manager quite well and he hopes they can reopen one or two of the sites.

Paul
 
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