A large Charles Hurst car showroom on Boucher Road has gone on the market as the car dealer seeks to relocate its Vauxhall brand.
Charles Hurst, which is part of Lookers plc, said the sale of the 1.2-acre site and 13,000 sq ft showroom on 27 Boucher Road is not related to Vauxhall owner PSA Group's plans to cull some showrooms.
A spokesman for Charles Hurst Group said the sale will instead see Vauxhall relocate to another same-sized site within the retail complex. "The decision to sell the site is part of a continual review of our entire estate portfolio which is designed to optimise space so that we achieve the best results for our dealerships, staff and customers," he said.
In March 2018 Vauxhall's French owners, PSA Group, said it would close around 100 UK showrooms, which amounts to one third of its showroom business.
It made the announcement not long after it bought the brand from American firm GM. The Charles Hurst Vauxhall showroom sale follows on from the closure of other Vauxhall dealerships throughout the UK, including one in Omagh.
Donnelly Group reportedly made 17 of the 24 staff at its Omagh facility redundant in June. It acquired the site back in 2016 from Gormley Motors.
It said it would consolidate into the Dungannon Vauxhall business and the Motorstore used vehicle businesses in both Dungannon and Enniskillen to serve demand in the Omagh area.
Stuart Draffin, director at Lambert Smyth Hampton, which has listed the sale, said: "We have already experienced a large number of enquiries from interested parties including but not limited to car-related uses. We believe it is highly likely more of the brands offering mainstream electric vehicles seek a presence on the Boucher Road this year."
Car sales in Northern Ireland during May picked up after showrooms around the province reopened.
However, they were still 50% lower than the same period last year. Speaking after the release of the figures last month, Ulster Bank economist Richard Ramsey said he was hopeful that the government would introduce incentives to entice consumers to purchase new cars, particularly electric vehicles.
He said: "We may see a more targeted 'cash for clunker' scheme linked specifically to the purchase of electric vehicles and incentives targeted at more environmentally friendly vehicles."
He said he expected a change in consumer behaviours after the pandemic, adding: "Consumers' transport needs and motoring requirements could well be very different to what they were a few months ago."