The first stage involved a comprehensive reseatch programme throughout major metropolitan areas which support large volume of sports car sales.
Whilst the McLaren MP4-12C was being conceived and developed, so was a retail distribution plan. The network plan had four main phases - desk research, field visits, active dealer prospecting and selection and training.
The first stage involved a comprehensive reseatch programme throughout major metropolitan areas which support large volume of sports car sales. McLaren anaylsed areas with high net worth individuals and likely locations to serve each potential market.
McLaren split the world into four main regiions: Europe, North America, the Middle East/Africa and Asia Pacific, each of which will be managed by a local McLaren Automotive management team. Initially 35 retailers have been selected in the following areas:
- Europe: UK, France, Germany, Spain, Belgium, Italy, Switzerland
- North America: USA, Canada
- Middle East / Africa: UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, South Africa
- Asia Pacific: Japan, Singapore, Australia, Hong Kong
With the city locations then selected within the regions, McLaren focused on the major businesses which represent premium car manufacturers by visiting each city.
The five key competences in the dealer selection process include:
- Experience in serving luxury, McLaren requires dealers who can offer a one to one relationships with the customer.
- McLaren wants partners that use business management tools and systems which aid development, offer a fine understanding of great aftersales and provide an outstanding bodyshop process too.
- Thirdly, each McLaren dealer needs to be well-funded – able to ride out the economic highs and lows without impacting customer experience.
- Fourth, they will need an in depth and intimate knowledge of their local market - relationships are absolutely crucial to success. Each McLaren dealer needs to be an integral part of the social makeup of their city and market and know most of the potential customers in that area.
- Finally, every McLaren dealer must understand and 'live' McLaren brand values. The goal is to develop a long-term partnership with a retail network that empathises with McLaren DNA - trust, ethics, professionalism, efficiency, confident humility and to believe in, and deliver, the very highest standards of customer service.
Once the process was complete, McLaren came to a shortlist of two preferred candidates for each location by the end of 2009. Each candidate was given the opportunity to prepare a full business plan, a marketing plan and a facility plan which they were invited to present to the management of McLaren. These presentations led to decision with the full dealer network being appointed by Spring 2011.Published 22 June 2011