It’s no secret that at Ask Patty we think women need more dealers out
there who will cater to what they want in not only a vehicle, but in a
sales and service relationship. And although the average gal might not
have a limit high enough on her Visa to pick up a new Bentley, the
ultra-luxury carmaker is still singing the right tune.
Recently Bentley treated some of their clients to a spa weekend in Ojai (north of Los Angeles) where they had nice dinners, indulgent massages, and even a trip to an apothecary to create their own custom scents. In recent years, car manufacturers are realizing the buying power of women and are starting to pay more attention to them as customers. Of course, if you’ve walked into a dealership recently, it’s obvious the trickle down effect hasn’t quite, well, trickled.
According to Forbes Autos, “As increasing numbers of women climb the corporate ladder and their buying power increases, more of their money is seeping into the traditionally male-dominated ultra-luxury car market, which can generally be divided into two niches: exotic sports cars (made by Aston Martin, Ferrari, Lamborghini, among others) and plush, elegant cruisers (made by Bentley, Maybach and Rolls-Royce).
Bentley is creating a more comfortable buying experience for their customers in their dealerships as well. Bentley CEO Stuart tells Forbes Autos that efforts are underway to make Bentley dealerships friendlier to all customers, with a recent focus on women. “You deal with one person through entire experience,” he says. Efforts also include hiring more women in key positions.
Author Marti Barletta has consulted with major auto manufacturers in the U.S. over the past few years to help their dealer networks better appeal to women. She says that automakers have lots of ground to make up in how they treat female buyers.
I love this story about a woman and her Porsche, who drives the car for fun on weekends. “This is my favorite car to drive when my husband and I want to go out,” she says. “It makes us feel young. It’s when I wear the most expensive dress, the most expensive purse and the car is the most important luxury.” Minus the beauty of the vehicle, she says she actually loves the car’s performance.
We aren’t about to run out and buy a Bentley, but we think some of the other manufacturers might want to pull their heads out of the proverbial sand and check out some of these women who are ready and willing to shell out some cash to drive a car that they love and work with a dealer they trust.
by Breanne Boyle