Ford is launching its Elite Commercial Service Centers to improve profitability in fixed operations. The automaker expects its retail network to open 120 of these centers in the coming years, with each featuring at least 24 service bays, being open 72 or more hours a week, and including a minimum of five mobile service vans. Ford claims it offers significant unmet needs in the commercial service marketplace. According to Tim Baughman, General Manager of Ford Pro North America, more than 120 dealers have signed letters of intent to invest in these facilities, with Ford using data and analytics to target dealers in markets with enough business to support such commercial service operations.
Two retailers who spoke to Automotive News put their cost at around $9 million and $15 million, respectively. Ford has declined to say how much financial help it would give dealers, although a memo sent to dealers last month and obtained by Automotive News said the company would provide up to $250,000 for a small subset of dealers who convert existing buildings to Elite facilities if it’s completed by the end of this year, with additional financial assistance of up to $300,000 available if a dealer adds more service bays.
Ford wants retailers to invest in new commercial-focused facilities with larger service bays and expanded hours designed to boost fixed operations profitability. The automaker is launching its Elite Commercial Service Centers featuring a minimum of five mobile service vans, at least 24 service bays, and open to serve customers 72 or more hours each week in response to the significant unmet needs in the commercial service marketplace. More than 120 dealers that signed letters of intent to invest in these facilities with different costs appear to show good prospects for the program.
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