G3 Vehicle Auctions has revealed it is pressing ahead with its new purpose-built facility, which will be off Junction 32 of the M62 in West Yorkshire, despite the uncertainty caused by the pandemic.
Building work on the 14-acre site began in March with completion and public launch scheduled for January 2021. The new facility will have the capacity to sell 50,000 vehicles annually when fully operational.
Independently owned and operated by local business partners Matt Dale and Amanda Holtby, G3 is investing in one of the UK’s largest purpose-built independent auction and refurbishment developments this century.
Gareth Jones, the company’s marketing manager, said: “We have a commitment for 30 new jobs, while we have a current tally of 48, so it is quite a jump in numbers for us.
“We’re talking with Wakefield College about on-site training and apprentices,’’ he added.
“We chose Yorkshire to develop the site because of the large cities and car dealers within the region.
“It’s the centre of the North. There are excellent transport links, with the M62 crossing the A1 and the M1 within a few miles of us.”
Mr Jones said these transport connections would allow the company to service the whole of the UK.
He added: “In five years, we envisage the Yorkshire centre will be running at maximum capacity. We will be looking to use this blueprint to expand the business with a further centre in another strategic UK location.
“We have seen the used car market be extremely buoyant during the last three months, with trade prices at record-highs due to overwhelming demand for mid-to-low priced stock and the public’s reaction to the current climate.”
Mr Jones said that many people are preferring to drive rather than use public transport as a result of the lockdown.
The joint managing director Matt Dale said: “It’s exciting to be able to announce this good news story to the industry.
“While there has been a seismic shift to online-only auctions in reaction to the events of this year, we believe that a mix of digital and physical solutions will be essential to supporting the automotive trade long into the future.
“That’s exactly why we’re investing heavily to create a true omni-channel experience to seamlessly merge both in our industry.”
“Everything we’re building is customer-centric. The centre will be packed with technology that has genuine purpose to help us open the best remarketing, refurbishment and asset management experience anywhere in the UK.”
A spokesman said G3 had taken a "clicks and bricks" approach at a time when many of its rivals are becoming online only.
The pre-sale process is supported by a new AI (artificial intelligence) drive-through vehicle inspection system using more than 20 cameras to inspect up to 85 vehicles per hour.
The site includes infrastructure for the future, with scalable facilities for up to 250 EV fast-charge points to support the expected demand for electric and hybrid vehicles.
G3 Vehicle Auctions is a Leeds-based remarketing specialist, which offers a marketplace for vendors such as AvailableCar Supermarket and Motability Operations to sell thousands of their vehicles every month to their network of 15,000 buyers from the trade and public.
Increased demand has seen G3 outgrow its current four-acre auction site. G3 Vehicle Auctions has created interactive 360 degree virtual reality tours to highlight the key elements of the new centre.
It has also distributed more than 1,000 branded Google Cardboard VR (virtual reality) headsets to selected partners across the industry.