New ‘workhorses’ join stable

Cindy Preller

ONE of the biggest car dealerships in the Eastern Cape is adding two new brands of vehicles to their stable.

After 10 years of exclusively selling vehicles from the Volkswagen Group, the Kelston Motor Group will now also be selling vehicles from two Chinese manufacturers, First Automobile Works (FAW) and Great Wall Motors (GWM).

Heading up the new dealership in Grahamstown Road, Port Elizabeth, Andrew McNaughton said for two years the directors of the Kelston Motor Group had looked for a second brand to complement the range offered by the Volkswagen Group’s vehicles.

“We saw a gap in the market with affordable options in the commercial sector and for this reason we decided on acquiring two brands, FAW and GWM,” McNaughton said.

“We started negotiations with the manufacturers in February this year, after the directors of the Kelston group agreed to add the brands to our stable.”

The Kelston Motor Group has seven dealerships in the Eastern Cape. Describing the new branch of the group as a “no frills” dealership, McNaughton said the FAW workshop and sales room would be situated adjacent to the GWM workshop in Grahamstown Road.

But the sales branch of GWM is in William Moffett Expressway.

“People who come here are looking for workhorses. FAW trucks are designed around the needs of the customers.

“Since opening our premises in June, we have already sold four trucks,” McNaughton said.

The cost of heavy commercial vehicles in the FAW range can go up to about R900000. Entry level sedans in the GWM range start at R140000.

McNaughton said a local construction company was looking to move its entire fleet of 148 vehicles to the FAW range since the Kelston group’s acquisition of the franchising rights in the Eastern Cape.

“We are not officially linked to the new FAW factory under construction at Coega, but it should make the supply of the trucks a lot easier. They will also have a massive showroom where customers can view the truck models,” he said.

FAW is one of the largest truck manufacturers in the world. Construction of the R200-million FAW assembly plant is under way in Zone 2 of the Coega Industrial Development Zone and is due to be completed by December.

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