Isuzu dealers invest £2m in two new Northern Ireland sites for 4x4 brand
Two Northern Ireland motor retailers have opened new sites to showcase a Japanese pick-up brand in combined investments of £2m.
John Barr Cars in Antrim and Eakin Bros in Maydown near Londonderry have both launched new Isuzu locations, with the potential to create around 14 new jobs.
The Japanese brand has five dealers in total in the province, although John Barr and Eakin Bros are described as the top performers for sales in Northern Ireland.
The new sites were launched by Isuzu managing directors from the group's European headquarters.
Eakin Bros, which has been operating for nearly 100 years, has spent over £1m in relocating its Isuzu business from Claudy to Maydown.
It has 32 staff at the moment but has said it may increase that number to 40.
Meanwhile, John Barr Cars has invested £0.7m in its site in Antrim, with plans to increase staff numbers from 14 to 20.
Please log in or register with belfasttelegraph.co.uk for free access to this article.
Mikio Tsukui, managing director and chief executive Isuzu Europe, said: "It is a great honour to have our dealers investing in their futures with Isuzu, both dealer operations are state-of-the-art new builds and located in prime locations with easy access to major road arteries. Both dealers are very highly regarded in our network.
"Eakin Bros have an outstanding 96-year pedigree, are third generation motor dealers and have represented Isuzu from the earliest days in the UK. John Barr Cars is a young company that has expanded rapidly and consistently with Isuzu."
He said that the UK is the biggest export market for the Isuzu brand of commercial pick-up
"We now supply several major fleets and utilities in Northern Ireland. These investments in bigger and better new locations will ensure that individual buyers and business customers each get the attention they expect and deserve."
Peter Eakin of Eakin Bros said: "We are delighted to have Maydown fully operational. Isuzu build the finest pick-ups in the market and we are absolutely delighted to continue to be the sole representatives for Isuzu and their specialist Arctic Truck brand in the north west."
Isuzu UK MD William Brown called the new sites a "double leap forward" for Isuzu, calling them its finest sites in Europe.
"Customers old and new will benefit greatly from bigger and better facilities," he said.