CMH Nissan Durban
CMH Nissan Durban forms part of a large network of Combined Motor Holdings (CMH) motor retailers. Formally known as Datcentre Motors, the Durban dealership was established 48 years ago in 1971. Ideally situated in the centre of Durban, the dealership takes up 6600 square meters and goes from one side of the block in 115 Monty Naicker Road (New Car Showroom) to the other side at 192 Dr Pixley Kaseme Street (Used Car Showroom). The advanced dealership was refurbished three years ago with an investment of R156 million into the Durban City Centre. Sean Singleton, CMH Nissan executive, says, “The building was completely rebuilt from start to finish and is probably one of the flagships of the Nissan brand. It is a landmark when you come into Durban.”
CMH Nissan Durban is now Nissan South Africa’s largest dealer and is by far KwaZulu-Natal’s largest Nissan dealer. One of Durban’s premier car dealerships, the business offers new and used car sales and has one of the biggest services and parts departments in KwaZulu-Natal. CMH Nissan Durban services many fleet customers and offers personalised and high-quality sales and maintenance services.
CMH Nissan Durban current dealer principal, Stuart Singleton says, “Leadership starts with how we are business and how we as senior management look everyone else and this filters down. That in turn instils something in our salesmen, who then, in turn are looking after our customers. We are being looked after by Nissan and it’s a two-way street. We do our job and we properly, we give head office the results and we have fantastic relationship with the manufacturer.” In addition, Stuart explained, “The dealer principals are allowed to be entrepreneurs and we are allowed put our own touch into the dealership and make things happen and that’s absolutely awesome.”
What makes the difference in the business is the people “You can take this dealership and put it in a container at the back of Springfield Park and you would still sell cars. It’s only because of the people that we put together, because that is what makes our business works. At the end of the day, if we can’t get the people together, we can’t get the business together,” says Ridwaan Mohammed, Used Car Sales Manager. In addition, Sean says, “A word that sums up our people approach correctly is attitude. I would rather employ somebody with the greatest attitude but who knows nothing because we can teach them.”
Crucial to the motor industry’s people approach is an understanding that building relationships with clients is essential. The business has been built on repeat customers and referrals. “This relationship is not only built on the first visit, but the second and the third. If a customer comes into the workshops for his car service, how he is treated in the workshop is important. It’s not a hit and miss type thing, we build rapport with customers,” explains Stuart. “Our fleet customers love us, because we are the only ones who will find their broken down car at 6 o’clock in the evening, when every other dealer will say sorry we are closed now,” added Ridwaan. “That what keeps customers coming back.”
CMH Nissan Durban recently hit a new record by selling 274 new cars in one month says Zain Essuf Nissan South Africa. “This a fantastic team and a fantastic record and a CMH Nissan record for one dealership to report,” he commented. These sale figures are a consequence of how the dealership works. “We work together, and we support each other because we spend more time at work, then we do at home, so we need to have the best possible environment here.” What also keeps customers coming back is that CMH Nissan Durban cares for the community and has been involved in many social responsibility initiatives including schools and social welfare. The latest is the provision of a backup car for all cyclists on the M4 between Durban and Ballito from 5am to 11am every Saturday and Sunday.
The internet is currently revolutionising the car retail business and the numbers of clients visiting a showroom have slowed down tremendously. When a customer comes onto the showroom floor, he knows more about the motor car than many salesmen because he has studied a specific car inside and out found the pros and the cons and read the reviews. “This has added to the competition. “We’ve got dealerships in KZN but with a click of a button, you no longer restricted to these but are open to 148 dealers in the country,” says Zain. “The guy gets to 9 o’clock in the evening and is shopping for a car from the comfort of his bed. he wants to talk to someone. And that is where are different because our salesmen will answer WhatsApps. We can provide you with a whole experience for that car and set up an appointment for when you want to view it. We will come to you.”
“We are passionate for our business. We are passionate for our people. We are passionate for our customers. We are passionate for the brand. We are a professional dealership and I think that’s what makes a difference,” concluded Stuart. “