Those who read last month’s Editorial on the new Morris Marina ADO 28 may be interested in this Press Release from the BLMC:—
After being on general sale for only one week the Morris Marina has attracted record business. Morris distributors and dealers are still trying to keep pace with the continuing high demand that has been prevalent since launch day last Tuesday. More than 20,000 Marinas have already been sold to private customers and contracts are now being completed with hire and fleet users for another 25,000 Marinas to be delivered in the next few months. These sales represent more than £40-million to Austin-Morris and break all previous records set by a British car manufacturer in the immediate post-launch period. Early reports indicate that approximately 75% of these sales have been at the expense of competitors’ products.
[It is interesting to note that in terms of financial turnover, BL have nearly recovered their expenditure on tooling up for the Marina in one week!—Ed.]
Distributors throughout the UK have made special arrangements to keep their showrooms open longer than usual and a number remained open throughout the weekend. Typical of the reaction of Morris distributors were comments made by two. Ian Appleyard, Chairman of The Appleyards group of companies Limited in Leeds, said today
“I have been in the Motor Trade for over thirty years and no new model with which I have been associated has made an impact quite like the Marina. We sold our initial quota of cars on the first day and the interesting thing is that a very high proportion of these sales have been to owners of the competitive cars.”
Another Morris distributor, Taylors of Penzance, reports the same story. The Chairman of Taylors, Vivian Taylor, commented
“What a start—a salesman’s dream. Since last Tuesday it has been difficult getting into our own showrooms because of the many would-be purchasers. We have had customers driving several miles in the hope of being able to purchase a Marina when they have been unsuccessful with their local dealer or distributor because that outlet has already sold its quota of cars. Again, the significant thing is the high number of customers switching from our competitor’s products.”
[We wonder what “the competitors” will have to say—are Citroën, for instance, wasting their time with the technically-advanced cars like the Gs and Ford being silly in bothering with Aveley?—Ed.]