Truck and van operators based in and around Dundee have received a welcome boost with the opening by Mercedes-Benz Dealer Western Commercial of a fully equipped workshop in the city.
The development on Ainslie Street, West Pitkerro Industrial Estate, represents a £¾-million investment by the manufacturer’s franchisee for Scotland’s Central Belt, which, like other members of the Mercedes-Dealer network, is also responsible for sales and support of the FUSO Canter light truck range.
The development has created 10 new jobs initially, with more set to follow as business takes off. Crucially, the facility is open into the night, which means customers can get their vehicles maintained and repaired outside normal hours, so they are always available for work when needed.
Western’s highly-trained technicians can also undertake MoT tests on all vehicle marques in the Class 4 (cars, vans and small minibuses up to 3.0 tonnes gross weight), Class 5 (buses with up to 15 passenger seats, as well as ambulances), and 7 (vans up to 3.5 tonnes gross weight) categories.
One of Britain’s biggest and most successful truck and van dealers, Western Commercial was awarded its Mercedes-Benz franchise for Dundee in the summer of 2012, in recognition of its impressive performance in the sales and particularly after sales arenas. Since then Western has been been serving local operators from the vehicle maintenance unit which it manages for high-profile customer Brakes Group, at the Riverside Distribution Centre.
However, as Dealer Principal Andrew Smith explained, this was only ever a stop-gap measure. “We’ve been searching since the day we won our Dundee franchise for the right location at which to open a fully equipped after sales facility in the city,” he said. “Our new Dundee depot is perfectly sized and ideally located, and we’re very excited about the potential it offers to grow our business in the city.”
Western has purchased the one-acre site, which was formerly used as a distribution centre by logistics giant Kuehne + Nagel. The Dealer has completed an office extension and refurbished and equipped the building to make it ‘fit for purpose’ in line with Mercedes-Benz standards.
It has also recruited Jamie Wotherspoon, a seasoned professional with 30 years’ industry experience, as Service Manager. Jamie spent most of his career with a rival manufacturer but worked more recently for an independent specialist, on contracts in Afghanistan and Liberia. The Parts department, meanwhile, is managed by Alan Fullerton.