Dealerships could save up to £10,000 a year by cutting energy use

29 March 2011 #SMMT News

“¢ Dealerships could save 25% of annual spend on energy use with zero or low cost measures.
“¢ Up to £50m/300,000 tonnes of CO2 savings could be made across the retail network per year.
“¢ SMMT publishes dealer cost saving plan at

According to new research into dealer energy efficiency, the average dealership could save as much as £10,000 a year by cutting its energy use. The findings, published in the ‘Dealer Energy Efficiency Guide’, written by an independent energy efficiency expert on behalf of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) in conjunction with the RMI and the Carbon Trust, shows ways dealers can become more energy efficient, thereby saving money and improving environmental performance.

The Carbon Trust, a not-for-profit company that provides specialist support to help businesses and public sector bodies cut their carbon emissions and save energy, appointed a consultant to visit 30 dealers to identify opportunities to improve energy efficiency across the sector. The dealerships, representing all major car brands in the UK marketplace, were of various sizes and types with differing energy spends and occupying buildings of different ages in order to be representative of the industry as a whole.

“Reducing energy costs will help dealerships sustain their businesses and improve the motor industry’s carbon footprint,” said SMMT Chief Executive, Paul Everitt, “Our study shows some great work is being done, and highlights that more than £4,000 of savings are possible without spending a penny. Using the seven step action plan, outlined in the ‘Dealer Energy Efficiency Guide’, we will be working closely with retailers to encourage them to take action now and cut energy use for immediate energy bill savings.”

Chief Executive of the Carbon Trust, Tom Delay, said: “All businesses can save significant amounts of money by cutting down on wasted energy. Car dealerships are no exception. We’re pleased to see the SMMT showing leadership by highlighting this opportunity to its members and we have been pleased to partner with them on providing dealers with practical guidance on how to make savings.”

Director, RMI National Franchise Dealer Association (NFDA), Sue Robinson, said, “The findings of the report highlight the opportunities for dealers and provide tremendous scope by benefitting the environment and the dealer business. Many of the recommendations in the report have no or very little cost, other than making someone responsible at the dealership for overseeing expenditure on energy. Today’s dealers put a lot of resources into stock control and energy usage should be no different. Reducing the carbon footprint is a good enough reason for reducing energy costs, but saving expenses that go straight to the bottom line will be every bit as important to today’s dealers. Remember, every £ saved is an extra £ on the bottom line and a positive step for a greener environment.”

The surveys revealed real world savings including:
“¢ Up to £8,000 a year by resetting heating controls on the boiler.
“¢ £300 a year by repairing door seals.
“¢ £1,000 a year by installing radiant heaters.
“¢ Up to £5,000 a year by reducing the fan speed on air-handling units.
“¢ Up to £6,000 a year by adjusting air-conditioning settings.
“¢ £100 a year by enabling time controls on the air compressor.
“¢ £1,000 a year by maintaining air compressors to prevent leaks.

Based on the number of dealerships in the UK, up to £50m worth of savings could be made across the automotive retail network per year, equating to a reduction of 300,000 tonnes of CO2.

SMMT summarises the key steps towards improving dealer environmental performance in a video and a seven step action plan hosted at where dealers can also find further information and advice about saving energy and reducing costs.

Click here to download the full Dealer Energy Efficiency Guide.

SMMT will also host a free webinar about dealer energy efficiency on 7 April, 14:30-14:15. Click here to find out more and to register.

If you would like more information, you can download a web version of the Dealer Energy Efficiency presentation from the report launch.

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