After serving MG and Rover customers since December 2006, Sterling Automotive has been placed into administration and has ceased trading. Founded by Patrick Warner in Eastbourne, Sterling went on to build up an enviable reputation for dependable care and repair of MG Rover, Jaguar and Land Rover products after local dealer groups either retrenched or changed franchises after the collapse of MG Rover in April 2005.
Following the re-birth of MG in 2008, Sterling took on the franchise for the East and West Sussex area selling the TF and, more recently, MG6 models. Despite all efforts to market the MG6 following the extremely popular TF being deleted, Sterling sadly entered administration following losses born out of the failure of the sales business.
The Brighton-based Sterling business was then restructured and opened another Service Centre back in Eastbourne under the control of Director, Nigel Goodyear, but with Patrick continuing to greet customers in Eastbourne. After a period of steady business, some internal politics caused the resignation and departure of Patrick Warner in August 2012.
Sterling Automotive (Brighton) Limited moved out of their existing premises in the same year. An insider told us: ‘a fundamentally flawed decision to relocate apparently to save cash, a marked change in attitudes coupled to fading customer loyalty due to the location of the new premises without doubt became their ultimate downfall. Once the new regime took hold after Mr Warner departed, the magic just vanished.’
Sterling caused a sensation a few years back when it developed the ultimate K-Series head gasket replacement; it was the first after-market company to offer a five-year guarantee on parts and workmanship.
Moving on to Rover and then PSV / HGV, he has circumnavigated most departments of dealerships including parts, service and latterly - the showroom. Mike has owned all sorts of rubbish from Lada to Leyland and also holds both Heavy Goods & Public Service Vehicle licences, he buys & sells buses and coaches during the week. Mike runs his own automotive web site and writes for a number of motoring or commercial vehicle themed publications
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