Having a great team of people not afraid of hard work has paid off for Wanganui Toyota.

The dealership has come away with trophies and plenty of kudos from the annual Toyota NZ awards in Nelson recently.

The local business was one of three finalists in the overall dealer of the year category, only just dipping out to eventual winner Bowater Toyota (Nelson/Blenheim).

And it was it was one of only three dealerships across the country to pick up a platinum award as well as taking out the Used Vehicle Excellence Cup.


The platinum award only goes to dealerships which have achieved a level of excellence in every area of their work that the judges believe "significantly exceeds" that of similar-sized operations.

The Excellence Cup is based on the extensive scorecard system which ranks the dealership across a range of criteria.

This is the first time the local dealer had been a finalist but not surprising given it achieved five out of five sales targets. It was also a major improver with new vehicle sales (up 50 per cent), used vehicle sales (up 42 per cent), parts sales (up 27 per cent) and extra care sales (up 59 per cent).

Richard Nesserling, chief executive and director of Wanganui Toyota, said the awards came on the back of an "excellent and hard-working staff".

"We've never been mentioned at the Toyota awards until now," he said. "When we took over four years ago we were rated the second worst Toyota dealership in New Zealand, so this is major turnaround to be now ranked as number two in the country.

"The staff are the drivers - those who stayed with me are 200 per cent behind what we're doing here," Mr Nesserling said.

"Everyone's trying for the same goal and doing it the Toyota way instead of being a second-hand car yard."

He was confident the dealership could repeat its effort when the awards were given out next February.

"Our January and February figures are already above the same period last year," he said.

Toyota NZ has been hosting dealership awards for more than 30 years, recognising the high level of performance they deliver.