Tristar takes Infiniti to market in three-month trial
Leading chauffeur operator Tristar Worldwide Chauffeur Services has taken delivery of two Infiniti M30d saloons as part of a trial programme with the Japanese brand. The cars are on loan to Tristar for three months, to gain feedback from customers about the new brand’s appeal to chauffeur customers.
“We’re going to be exposing the product to frequent users of our premium service and higher-end clients who use our Volvo S80 and Mercedes-Benz E-class fleets,” said Michael Coombes, Tristar’s Premium Service Delivery Manager.
Simon Dyer, Infiniti Head of Corporate Sales, handed over the cars at Tristar’s head office near London Heathrow Airport. Dyer is targeting the chauffeuring sector as a key potential market for the M30d, Infiniti’s first diesel-engined car. He said: “We want to see how well the M30d performs as a chauffeur vehicle, and we couldn’t have a better launch platform than Tristar.”
Daniel Stener, Tristar Roadshow and Preium Services Manager, said he was delighted that Infiniti had chosen Tristar for the trial programme. “There are certain key individuals in our client base that we will be targeting with the vehicles.” One key Tristar account is providing cars for the US Embassy in London – and Stener said American clients would be familiar with Infiniti as the brand has been sold in the US for more than 20 years. Infiniti is the luxury brand of Nissan, and was launched in the UK in late 2009.
Stener said Tristar would select a small group of chauffeurs to drive the Infinitis, and these drivers will be fully briefed on the product, and able to answer customer questions about the cars. An Infiniti FX diesel SUV is also being loaned to Tristar for a one-month trial. “These chauffeurs will have an understanding of the product and will be ambassadors for the brand,” he said.
Tristar’s Premium service uses mainly Volvo S80 saloons – with a few V70 estates – and Mercedes-Benz E-class saloons. The company has around 450 Volvos and 100 E-classes, and has slimmed down its brand offering to these two, having offered “eight or nine different vehicle types in 1999”, said Stener.
However, he would be prepared to add a number of Infinitis to the fleet if the trial goes well. “It all depends on customer feedback,” he said.