Exeter dealership placed under receivership
7 November 2008

A Bentley dealership based in Exeter has been placed into receivership after running out of money as the credit crunch begins to affect retailers of high-end goods.

Bentley West Country closed its doors this week after sales of new cars completely dried up. Andrew Sheridan of joint receiver Baker Tilly said that the dealer hadn’t sold a new car for three months and that it had effectively run out of money.

He said: "In the last three months, plummeting second hand values of luxury cars, combined with a drying up of inquiries for new vehicles, has caused Bentley West Country to run out of cash."Unfortunately, it has ceased trading with the loss of all 19 jobs.”

The showroom has been stripped of its fixtures and fittings and all cars have been removed. The nearest Bentley dealer to the south west of England is now Bentley Cardiff.

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7 November 2008

[quote Autocar]the dealer hadn’t sold a new car for three months [/quote]


So one wonders, what was drving purchases in the past, prior to August?

The West Country is a large area, yet appears unable to support a luxury carmaker. Very interesting.

Could it be that this is the shape of things to come? Outside of the capitol and a select group of flush people, Russian oligarchs, it looks like the sole clientele for Bentley is Premiership footballers. That, given there's a maximum of 200 of them, would cramp Bentley's UK sales somewhat. The crew at Crewe must hope for a serious rebound in commodity prices and oil in particular so that Arab potentates can start making serious orders again.

7 November 2008

This might be the first, but it's not going to be the last. And how miffed will the old boys on the 'English Riviera' be that they have to drive all the way to Cardiff to get the oil changed on their 3000-mile a year Conti GTs?

7 November 2008

To an Exeter local who drove past this dealership on a daily basis the failure was no surprise. The stock level had been increasing for a long time with little apparent turnover. We still have "luxury" car dealers in Exeter: the Ferrari and Maserati dealer is just round the corner from the failed Bentley dealer and Porsche is directly across the road. Perhaps the downfall of Bentley in Exeter was a consequence of the equally poor performance of our local football teams.

7 November 2008

Apologies Jazz2 for the 'luxury'-less insinuation of my earlier comment with regards to Exeter/West country.

Would be interesting to know how Ferrari and Maserati sales are holding up in UK at present. Unlike Bentley, the SMMT does not state these individual brands' sales figures, simply Fiat's.

One gets the feeling with Bentley, that like MINI, when the Continental GT first came out it was thee vehicle to have and be seen in for anyone seriously flush, a 'hot!' car as the Yanks would say, a real vogue car. Unfortunately, the flipside of being thee fashion car is that when it turns, it turns spectacularly. The MINI's crashed over the fallout of estate agents, one wonders if Bentley's crashed due to hedge funders going bang in Mayfair.

8 November 2008

Why have a Bentley dealership in the West Country, do dairy farmers have much use for them?

If you are going to have a dealer why not locate it closer say to the Bristol/Gloucester than all the way in Exeter.

I can see more of these luxury dealers located away from the major urban areas struggling....

P.S Doesn't Chris Harris live in that part of the world?, could he not have helped the local economy by buying one, he seems to have plenty of money!!

10 November 2008

Unfortunately a second UK Bentley dealer has also gone into receivership it was announced last week... More to come I should imagine too.

10 November 2008

[quote Maj1c]

Why have a Bentley dealership in the West Country, do dairy farmers have much use for them?

If you are going to have a dealer why not locate it closer say to the Bristol/Gloucester than all the way in Exete

[/quote] Oh dear Maj1c - did you not know we now do have electrickery in Devon?!? You probably didn't know either that Exeter has the highest concentration of car dealers in Europe...less one now. If anything being away from a "major urban area" is a bonus...especially when you are so close to all the holiday/second homes in Cornwall.

11 November 2008

[quote horseandcart] The MINI's crashed over the fallout of estate agents [/quote]

Much of the Mini's appeal was it's cute looks when BMW first introduced it. The revised one may have better engines but it has been tweeked here and there resulting in an ugly duckling. (All it took was the slightly bigger bum, 20mm waistline hike and dustbin lid sized speedo). I understand some of this was forced upon them by crash test requirements, but I'd have developed a more compact engine and left the body alone.


11 November 2008

I was particularly saddened to read of this Bentley's dealer's closure. I visited there with a friend as a Birthday treat for him back in April this year. We toured the "posh" car dealers all the way around the Marsh Barton area where Bentley Westcountry was situated. We were particularly welcomed at Ferrari, Porsche and of course Bentley. I was also saddened to read that this closure will lose 19 people their jobs. I don't know about "how the crow flies" but my nearest Bentley dealer now in the south will be Bentley Hampshire near Lyndhurst in the New Forest. Surely this is just closer than Cardiff is to Exeter?

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