The move follows recent cuts of up to £1,300 on the 200 and 400 ranges, which had previously come under some criticism for being too expensive and too small for the lower and upper medium segments. Central to the strategy is a much closer relationship with the medium sized fleet sector. For the first time, Rover staff will sit down with managers of smaller fleets to develop specifically tailored deals. Dealers are being trained to target smaller fleet business through the Business File scheme. Rover says that dealers increasingly realise that their future lies with this sector of the market as the range moves upmarket, and contact with local businesses is essential for their image with all customers.
The general dealer policy contrasts with that of Ford, which recently announced that dealers would be strongly discouraged from selling outside their allotted territory. The Ford move was designed to stop dealers from competing with each other, and more powerful outlets 'stealing' sales from weaker retailers.