Relocation prompts workshop update
From its early days providing support for the Experience Centre at Silverstone race circuit to becoming the number two dealer for Lotus cars in Europe, accounting for good percentage of all sales of new Lotus cars in the UK alone, Lotus Silverstone has seen steady business development, which culminated in July 2018 with a relocation to a brand new 11,000 ft2 showroom, workshop, stores and administration facility on the Silverstone Park at the heart of the Silverstone Technology Cluster.
The move virtually tripled the space that it previously occupied and allowed for a ‘clean sheet’ approach to designing its workshop, where Lotus Silverstone carries out service, repair, diagnostics and restoration work on new and used Lotus cars.
“We identified the need to expand and the opportunity to relocate not far from our original premises to Silverstone Park. The location was ideal as it also gave us that blank sheet of paper to create spaces that we wanted,” says Matthew Haskins, Managing Director, Lotus Silverstone. “We had the opportunity to split the space to suit our current requirements, and develop themes to create a high-tech, formula One-type look and feel to the interior of the building. At the same time the move allowed us to future-proof ourselves for growth and any corporate requirements that Lotus Cars may have.”
When it came to the workshop area the requirement was for efficient use of the space and present a clean operating environment for Lotus Silverstone’s technicians to work in. Tenders were requested from storage suppliers and System Store Solutions were the successful bidder, with its Fami range of storage and workbench systems.
“We asked all of the suppliers to quote a solution but to our vision of what we wanted and while not coming in with the lowest price it was clear that Kate Fyfe, General Manager at System Store Solutions had listened to what we wanted, and their team created a layout that suited our needs.” With 90 per cent of Lotus Silverstone’s invoices being derived from after-sales and servicing, the workshop plays a vital role in its business. “We recognised the importance of this project to Lotus Silverstone and in-line with our normal method of working we listened and studied what they required to make this project both efficient and cost-effective,” says Kate Fyfe. “We had a tight deadline to work to due to the planned opening of the new facility to coincide with the British Grand Prix weekend, but careful planning and discussions with both Lotus Silverstone and Fami, ensured that everything was in place for the opening day.”
The completed storage and workbench solution include a variety of sliding door storage as well as drawer units as well as featuring integrated airlines and waste receptacles, all designed to present a clean and efficient working area. The final choice of colour for the doors and drawer fronts was arrived at after a visit to fellow System Store Solutions customer and near neighbour of Lotus Silverstone, Envision Virgin Racing Formula E Team, whose workshop had been similarly designed and installed by System Store Solutions.
“We had planned to go with a lighter colour scheme, but after seeing how modern and clean the charcoal grey scheme looked we opted for the same,” says Matthew Haskins. “In conclusion we are very happy with the result, System Store Solutions listened to our requirements, produced a layout based on those requirements then delivered the complete project on time at a competitive price.”