Mahindra South Africa struck Gold at the National Automobile Dealers' Association (NADA) annual awards dinner.
The group won a Gold Award in the Dealer Satisfaction Index (DSI) rankings, which tests dealers' satisfaction with the way a brand supports and communicates with them.
Mahindra's maiden Gold Award follows two years in which it received Silver and it places the company in the top half of the 29 vehicle brands that were surveyed for the NADA Awards.
"We are very proud of our Gold Award as it is a direct indication of the health and happiness of our dealer network," says Rajesh Gupta, CEO of Mahindra South Africa. "This Award is a welcome recognition of the team's hard work to improve every aspect of our dealer support, knowing that a happy dealer ultimately leads to a happy customer."
Mahindra's overall DSI score was 77.1%, which is a significant improvement on its final score of 70.8% in 2018.
According to NADA's research, which was compiled with the help of Lightstone Automotive, Mahindra scored well above average on most metrics, which include being open and honest in its communication with its network, being fair and responsive in the way it allocated vehicles and having a good corporate social investment programme.
"Many people do not realise that our dealers are independent businesses and not part of the Mahindra Group. As such, we have to ensure that their businesses are healthy and their personnel are happy in order to ensure that they offer the best possible service to our customers," says Gupta.
The NADA Gold Award caps a very eventful start to 2019, in which the company introduced its range of tractors and farm implements as well as its ultra-modern new XUV300 compact SUV. It also inaugurated a new head office in Centurion, Gauteng, where it will house its growing group of personnel.
"Last year, we broke through the 5 000-unit barrier and grew by 26% overall, while the market contracted by 1%. This was no easy task and a lot of the hard work was done by our dealer network. We applaud our dealers for helping us grow into a truly South African brand," says Gupta.
Mahindra has a national dealer network of more than 60 dealers and is looking to expand into more regions in 2019.