Electrifying response to Jaguar's new EV

by Myron Love  . Mar 08 2019
JaguarDerek Ranson, a new sales manager at Jaguar Land Rover Winnipeg, says the 2019 I-Pace shows that Jaguar remains on the cutting edge of technology.


Derek Ranson, a new sales manager at Jaguar Land Rover Winnipeg, says the 2019 I-Pace shows that Jaguar remains on the cutting edge of technology.

Jaguar has an all-new electric vehicle in its lineup, and the reaction has been electrifying.

“The I-Pace hit the ground two months ago,” says Derek Ranson, a sales manager at Jaguar Land Rover Winnipeg. “This new model shows that Jaguar remains on the cutting edge of technology. The fit and finish is fantastic and the response has been great.”

The I-Pace is a luxury SUV capable of seating five and also offers ample storage space.

Ranson says one of the main consumer concerns about electric cars is the range, especially in the winter. Under general conditions, the I-Pace has a range of about 377 kilometres per charge, and can come close to delivering that range even when the mercury drops.

Jaguar Land Rover Winnipeg currently has three of the models in stock — with a starting MSRP of $89,800.

According to Ranson, there have also been big changes to the service area of the Volvo Jaguar Land Rover Winnipeg store.

“Our shop was one of the oldest in the Birchwood Group,” Ranson says. “It wasn’t up to par with the other Birchwood luxury stores. Over the past few months, our shop has been completely overhauled.”

The redo was completed in January and includes new lighting, work benches and a fresh coat of anti-slip paint on the floor. A new ventilation system has also been installed and there is a new change room for the technicians.

In order to accommodate expanding sales, the dealership has also added four new players to its sales team. Chris Wiesner is the veteran of the group with more than 10 years of experience selling mainly European imports. Mikaela Hildebrand comes from the insurance industry, where she was a claims adjuster; Blair Cameron had spent 32 years selling electronic equipment before joining the team; and Arthur Zhang was selling fragrances at the Bay.

Jim Snusher is the new fixed operations manager and Johnson Van is the assistant service manager. Snusher has been managing autobody shops for 20 years. He had been the general manager of the Birchwood Collision Centre for 16 of those years. Van was previously a service adviser at the Birchwood Group’s BMW store.

Southland Honda changes ownership

Winkler’s Southland Honda has become the newest member of the Murray Auto Group.

“Greg and I started talking about this last summer,” says Dan Murray, referring to Greg Ens, who was the president of Southland Honda.

“We were able to put together a deal that works for all concerned.”

Murray notes Southland Honda was founded by Greg’s father, Al Ens, in the early 1980s.

The dealership has a staff of 20, and carries new and used vehicles as well as power products, motorcycles and ATVs.

As is the pattern with the Murray Group, when a new store is added to the group, a managing partner is promoted from within the group or, in this case, from among Southland Honda’s existing management.

Jody Hildebrand has been in auto sales for 25 years and was previously Southland Honda’s sales manager.

Murray says there are no other changes planned for Southland Honda, which is now the 36th store in the Murray Auto Group stable and the second in the Morden-Winkler area.

About a year ago, the Murray Group acquired the Pembcorp Auto Group, which consisted of the flagship Pembina Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram (now Murray Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram) and Chrysler stores in Portage la Prairie, Carman and Morden.

Vickar Chevrolet hires new sales reps

Vickar Community Chevrolet has recently welcomed two new consultants to the sales floor.

Karlee Williams has a background in cosmetic sales and management.

“I was looking for a change after 12 years in cosmetics sales,” she says. “I was told I would make a good auto salesperson. I came to Vickar Chevrolet in October, met the management team and was hired on the spot. It has been a huge change, but everyone has been really supportive.”

Williams reports she is selling about eight cars a month on average.

Another newcomer, Jamie Degagne, was selling plastics before joining the Vickar Chevrolet team.

“I always wanted to try auto sales,” he says.

“So far, I am doing quite well.”