OTT Service Hospitality

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by spinaltap, Feb 16, 2018.

  1. spinaltap

    spinaltap Active Member

    Messages:
    280
    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2008
    Location:
    Chocolate-Central
    Car:
    A180 Avantgarde (2009) A180 Avantgarde (2012)
    Today, I had my annual Mercedes service in Birmingham (LSH Auto). In the past, the ‘Lounge’ service tier enabled complimentary access to their self-service drinks machine (cardboard cups) as one idled the hours away while the car was being attended to. This suited me fine.

    Now, all that has gone. Instead of the self-serve Coffee Machine, there is now a dedicated ‘Waiter’ standing behind a bar who makes your drinks, served in appropriate crockery, alongside your choice of sliced cake or croissants. Once finished, your used crockery is promptly collected.

    This change in customer service is, frankly, way OTT - even prententious. Let’s face it, you pay for it in your service bill. I prefer the former understated elegance of a true Mercedes’ owned dealership: not this American-style brashness.

    Also, the sales representatives ‘ suits have disappeared in favour of ‘Petronas’ T-Shirts. That aire of confidence in the sales representative’s ability to personally look after you has subsequently gone. They effectively looked like someone working at a much lesser brand.

    I’m certain others will completely disagree with my assessment of today’s experience, but I shall look elsewhere next year.
     
  2. Happytalk73

    Happytalk73 MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    6,075
    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2015
    Location:
    Uk
    Car:
    Vito
    I totally agree with your first point. However, many customers will adore it and enjoy being pampers and feeling special.

    MB Carlisle have dress down days were they wear 'Petronas' clothing. I rather like the look much better than the suited n booted look.
     
    leef44, GeeJayW and clk320x like this.
  3. MancMike

    MancMike New Member

    Messages:
    0
    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2014
    I always use MB Manchester now as they've treated me like a king. They give me fresh coffee in nice cups, and even when just dropping my car off for it's MOT, they've given me a lift to work too. I've never had an MOT service include a wash and vac either!
     
    GeeJayW and clk320x like this.
  4. DrFeelgood

    DrFeelgood MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    9,251
    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2005
    Car:
    BMW 740Li
    Pesky waiters serving up coffee and snacks.

    I'm totally against it, give me KwikFit's waiting room and their free coffee from the Klix machine every time.
     
  5. markjay

    markjay MB Club Veteran

    Messages:
    24,977
    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2008
    Location:
    London
    Car:
    W204 C180 Executive SE 2013 Automatic / COMAND NTG4.7 and Morel speakers fitted by www.comand.co.uk
    My W204 had its previous services done by LSH Auto in Birmingham.

    Based on your description, it seems the car must have been owned by some posh tot.... :)
     
  6. clk320x

    clk320x Hardcore MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    10,167
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2016
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Car:
    W211 E320 CDI, W212 E250 CDI, W203 C32 AMG
    The first time I have heard of someone complaining about customer service which was too good :)

    Are people ever happy? :D
     
    ringway, BlackC55, C43AMG and 9 others like this.
  7. Wolfie1

    Wolfie1 Active Member

    Messages:
    962
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2017
    Location:
    Aberdeen
    Car:
    C180 AMG SPORT + and an FD RX7
    Both me and my wife both bought our mercedes from the local dealership, we have been told come back any time for a coffee and a chat and we have been back in twice and gotten coffee and biscuits :)
     
  8. Asal

    Asal Active Member

    Messages:
    106
    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2017
    Location:
    Glasgow Area
    Car:
    E 220d estate 2013
    I really do not want to be negative on this clk320x (and I do think you make a very good point), but the personal service is being paid for by the customer, on the other hand, a job is being created, albeit likely at minimum wage for the employee (I cannot see that is bad in itself).

    Are we the customer paying for a job for an individual taking up such a position?, most likely - yes, is the dealer making a profit from that job - I do not know, but if we the customer are prepared to pay for that service then there should be minimal cost to the customer or maximum benefit to the employee in terms of remuneration.

    Yes, give the customer some\plenty of pampering, but it would 'sting' with me if that pampering resulted in profiteering by Mercedes Benz at actual additional expense to the customer.

    Only Mercedes Benz will know the true cost, I trust\hope MB have a moral conscience in making available such a provision.
     
  9. Deleted96908

    Deleted96908 Guest

    Similar story at Audi Bedford and Reading. Lots of money gone into those dealerships, although I understand the one adjacent the M4 going into London is quite something. Stories of underground floors housing owner accessible service bays etc. All very James Bond.

    Where will it end?


    ~
     
  10. markjay

    markjay MB Club Veteran

    Messages:
    24,977
    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2008
    Location:
    London
    Car:
    W204 C180 Executive SE 2013 Automatic / COMAND NTG4.7 and Morel speakers fitted by www.comand.co.uk
    On a positive note...

    Let's say there's competition between MB dealers in the Birmingham area.

    And let's say that their contract prevents them from selling their services below a certain price.

    Now they can't compete on 'quality' because let's face it the customers do not have a clue what happens to their cars after the vehicle has been whisked-away and disappears into the large hangar that's the workshop, the only difference they can see is that car is returned hoovered and washed.

    So the dealer principal decides to pay for a 'waiter' out of the dealership's profit.... and now everyone knows how good LHS Auto are. So it worked!

    All in theory, of course.
     
  11. gaz_l

    gaz_l MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    2,316
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2006
    Car:
    Mini Cooper S, BMW M140i
    The MOT garage has a KLIX machine (which I'd rather avoid) but the Merc dealer has a nice seating area with proper coffee, a big telly with the news channel and free wifi. One's hourly rate is about twice the other. I wonder why that is?

    Cheers,

    Gaz
     
    ringway likes this.
  12. Happytalk73

    Happytalk73 MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    6,075
    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2015
    Location:
    Uk
    Car:
    Vito
    Last time our car was serviced at Carlisle I sat in waiting area with a coffee. Jeramy Kyle was on the TV. I had to cover my eyes and shout for help. :confused:
     
  13. GeeJayW

    GeeJayW MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    2,883
    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2017
    Location:
    NW Blighty
    Car:
    S205 C250d AMG Line P+, MX-5 25th Anniversary Edition
    A Lexus dealership near us used to (maybe still does) operate the showroom as a male crèche on a Saturday morning. Husbands could drop the missus off at a local retail park and then take their Lexus to the dealership for a free check and wash, free coffee and croissant, free newspaper. The rationale being that the sales team could chat with their customers which often led to new sales sooner or later. The cost of a car wash dude and a few cups of coffee etc. was a pittance for the exposure they got (according to the sales manager).

    Our MB dealer has always treated us with respect, made us feel welcome and we have always received good customer service, including free coffee and somewhere comfortable sit in peace or chat with somebody, as appropriate. This treatment is one of the reasons we've had Mercedes cars for the last 12-years. The service staff and showroom floor staff wear black trousers/skirts and Petronas shirts. The sales and management staff seem to wear suits. All looks fine to me.
     
    Happytalk73 likes this.
  14. GLK

    GLK MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    2,659
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2014
    Location:
    Bozeat, Northants
    Car:
    A200 Sports Coupé C169
    Mercedes Northampton used to have an excellent [self-service] coffee machine, where one could actually get a very decent ristretto - I loved it.

    A couple of years ago, they moved to this staff-operated system and their new, much less sophisticated, coffee machine is now behind a counter ... no more ristretto, and espresso is just about tolerable. And now comes with a somewhat patronising "eX" ... cute girls though o_O
     
  15. Rory

    Rory MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    7,334
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2005
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    Car:
    C270CDi Estate (late 2004 facelift model)
    The indie I used washed my car after its last MOT. I felt embarrassed they'd done it!

    Merc dealer always used to wash it, even when I asked them not to!

    The dealers (not just MB) have these mega facilities now because customer surveys say that's what people want. So it's our own fault!
     
  16. markjay

    markjay MB Club Veteran

    Messages:
    24,977
    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2008
    Location:
    London
    Car:
    W204 C180 Executive SE 2013 Automatic / COMAND NTG4.7 and Morel speakers fitted by www.comand.co.uk
    MB Brooklands asked me if I wanted the car washed. I said no, and they didn't.

    I guess it was a test and my reply classified me as 'one of them two-buckets car nutters' :)
     
    clk320x, GeeJayW, GLK and 2 others like this.
  17. Happytalk73

    Happytalk73 MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    6,075
    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2015
    Location:
    Uk
    Car:
    Vito
    Waste of bloody time that is. Dirty sponge & plasterers bucket full of warm water with a dash fairy liquid is good enough. :p
     
  18. oldguy57

    oldguy57 MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    1,036
    Joined:
    May 20, 2015
    Location:
    Lancashire
    Car:
    Now various and sundry
    Hospitality is becoming the trendy thing in the retail area apparently. Consumers need a "buying experience" according to the experts.:dk:
     
  19. leef44

    leef44 Active Member

    Messages:
    493
    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2015
    Location:
    Surrey
    Car:
    SLK 55 AMG, Suzuki Ignis Sport
    I forgot to tell them not to wash on my last service, they didn't ask me, it was a formality for them. I don't like the jet wash on the car. Often this is where you see those little faults creeping in e.g. humidity in the headlamps, electronic sensors start failing.

    I had the folding roof open on the drive back home. When I got home, I couldn't close it. Eventually I discovered it was due to a wet sensor in the boot. Damn those jet washes!
     
  20. GLK

    GLK MB Enthusiast

    Messages:
    2,659
    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2014
    Location:
    Bozeat, Northants
    Car:
    A200 Sports Coupé C169
    MB Northampton repeatedly washed my car, even though I told them not to, even left a [nicely printed on A5 card] note in the car.
    To make things worse, their car wash is an automatic rotating brushes horrid thing, absolutely filthy, with walls covered in mould - I had to do full disinfection routine after each "wash".

    So, when the last Service Care plan expired, I switched the new 3-yr one to MB Milton Keynes. I hope they will listen - first service is due at the end of March.
     
    Rory, merc85 and clk320x like this.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.