Surrey based Caterham Cars has appointed Skoda to supply its Dartford factory fleet of company cars following a unanimous decision by its team of managers.

The team took it upon themselves to set a realistic budget for their fleet and test drove models from a wide range of manufacturers in that class.

Simon Lambert, Aftersales Manager for Caterham Cars, comments, "The Skoda Octavia far outshone every other car in its class. The 2.0TDi diesel engine’s performance was most impressive (high-praise from a company whose latest offering, the Caterham CSR260 charges from 0-60mph in just 3.1 seconds). On the whole it was smoother, quieter and quicker than the competition, which is essential as we all generate a decent mileage commuting to work. We felt the build quality in particular was excellent, with a classic interior - crucial for a company car. The unanimous decision shows just how strongly we all felt about the model."

Martin Burke, Head of Business Sales for Skoda UK, added, "Being appointed to supply company cars to another car manufacturer is the ultimate endorsement. The Octavia is increasingly becoming a popular choice for fleets as it delivers a medium segment car at lower-medium segment prices. "

Richard Gale at Skoda retailer Sherlodge Garage in Gillingham supplied the sports and racing car manufacturer with seven Octavia hatchbacks in a mix of 1.9TDi and 2.0TDi, Ambiente and Elegance trim levels, providing drivers with luxuries such as air conditioning, a trip computer and six CD autochanger among much more.

Skoda has recently introduced three new versions of the highly successful Octavia to complement the existing line-up. Meeting all the requirements of a business user, including low whole life costs, unsurpassed customer service support and high levels of standard equipment, the Octavia range now includes the luxurious L&K, the dynamic Sport and highly practical 4x4.

Skoda business sales volume has grown from 1,273 in 1998 to 10,030 in 2004, a phenomenal growth of 680 per cent. In 2004, while the fleet market was up 2.3 per cent on the previous year, Skoda business sales increased by 5.3 per cent. In light of this success, Skoda is also increasing its number of specialist business sales centres around the country from 18 to 40 to further increase its levels of business service. In the past 12 months, business sales staff has almost doubled, increasing from 12 in 2004 to 23 in 2005, under the supervision of the newly appointed head of business sales, Martin Burke. Skoda aspires to provide a better service for customers and retailers, mirroring the customer satisfaction already proven in the retail market.

Published : 29/09/05 Author : Melanie Carter

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