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More than just a service station

More than just a service station

At the inauguration of the Mahindra First Choice Services’ second centre in Pune, Huned
Contractor gets the details of the company’s game-plan in the after-market sector


The servicing of a car is no longer limited to a mandatory maintenance schedule, washing, greasing, and minor repairs. Rather, it’s all about a professional package that also provides an extremely “feel good” experience to the customer. It is this shift in trend in the after-market sector that has been driving the setting up of Mahindra First Choice Services (MFCS) centres across India. And on July 11, the company set up its second such centre in Pune at Hadapsar, inaugurated by Rajeev Dubey, President (Group HR, Corporate Services & After-Market) and Member of the Group Executive Board, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. “This will not only increase our footprint further but is also a part of an ambitious program to have 50 centres by the year-end across India,” he said. As of now there are 15 MFCS centres operational across tier-1 and tier-2 cities.

Stating that the second centre in Pune now has more advanced equipment and infrastructure than the first one which was opened three years ago, Dubey, in the course of an exclusive interview with Automotive Products Finder, said that the big game-plan was to have 500 MFCS points within the next five years, which would include franchised stations. “This new business vertical of M&M has been added after careful consideration and in view of the fact that the current population of 6 million cars in India is expected to grow to 17 million by 2015. This implies that there is vast untapped potential in the space of providing professional service and repairs covering multi-brand cars. This will create an organised sector and a business eco-system, which will replicate the existing eco-system for new vehicles,” he said.


Elaborating about what gives an MFCS its exclusivity, Dubey said that the brand offers ‘Insta Serve’ facility which is the best and fastest in the diagnosis of brake efficiency, lubricant changing, washing and express servicing, and state-of-the-art tools and equipment, all under one roof. “It’s a very accurate system in problem detection and does not depend on the judgement of an individual alone. A general road test usually consumes about 20-30 minutes for any diagnosis related to brake efficiency, suspension or alignment problems. Our fully automated diagnostic bay eliminates the need for a physical road test and gives a health report within 10 minutes. And that’s important in today’s times when a car owner wants to cut down on time,” he added.

Set up with an investment of around Rs 1.5 crore as a brownfield project, the other features of the new MFCS include an automatic under-chassis wash with high pressure jets that take less than a minute to perform a thorough cleaning job. “Due to the multiple nozzle accessories, this facility consumes less water than normal washing bays and is also more effective in cleaning sticky dirt in the nook and corners of the car’s under bay,” said YVS Vijay Kumar, CEO, MFCS. The other facilities include an express bay that is equipped with all the latest tools such as air filter cleaner, oil dispenser unit, etc. to ensure fastest turnaround time for paid service without compromising on quality and a lube bay with an easy-to-use oil drain pan that allows quick and complete removal of used oil and replenishment with fresh oil in the fastest possible time.


Set up over an area of 20,000 sq.ft with a monthly capacity of servicing 1,000+ cars of various brands and a crew of 25 trained technicians, the opening of the second centre in Pune has now paved the way for two more by the year-end. “Pune has witnessed a remarkable growth in the number of cars of a wide variety of brands and we are therefore going to adopt our cluster approach here as we have done in other cities like Delhi, Chennai, Surat, Mumbai, etc. Under this strategy, a particular area that has a high number of car users is marked out to set up a MFCS. For example, Hadapsar was chosen because of it being a centre-point for the IT hub of Magarpatta and the upscale neighbourhoods of Wanowrie, NIBM Road, etc.,” Vijay Kumar said.

Speaking about the change in customer expectations, Dubey said that apart from the time factor, transparency matters the most. “A customer needs the assurance that there will be no hidden costs and that the service station will not inflate the bill with unwanted repairs and replacements. Therefore, our MFCS brand has been built up on providing the commitment that there will be nothing more or less than what is required. Also, for customers who buy high-end luxury cars, it is important that the right tools are used and the replacements are original while the servicing is carried out by trained people,” he added. MFCS has a training centre at Hyderabad. “It’s important to develop the right skill-sets because a multi-brand service station calls for the expertise of dealing with a very wide portfolio of cars,” Dubey said.

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