Garage Watch: Joe Duffy
BMW/Mini dealer, Exit 5 M50, North Rd, Dublin 11
Published 19/05/2010 | 11:15
Four years on this is still the wheel deal
HOW time flies. Last time we visited Joe Duffy’s dealership was four years and three months ago. Times were certainly different then. And so were a few things about this place. Nowadays you have to exit at Junction 5, pass the front of the garage and enter the rear via a left turn to Charlestown Shopping Centre.
New road construction makes it a bit tricky but there are plenty of helpful direction signs. As you walk towards the showrooms you pass a large holding compound for cars.
The garage forecourt has been newly surfaced. Despite the ongoing construction works, the used cars outside were kept remarkably dust-free.
A cheerful receptionist supplied us with a used-car list. We found 83 BMWs and 15 Minis, all exceptionally well detailed.
Our focus was on a relatively new BMW 520d automatic or a new 5-Series with no trade-in. Despite it being early on a Saturday morning there was a good buzz about the place. Customers sat at almost every open plan desk with sales people, while others wandered around or drank coffee at the excellent customer waiting area Such is the standard within the BMW and Mini showrooms, Joe Duffy could almost be justified in having an admission charge.
This is not just a showroom; this is an automotive gallery of cars, accessories and motor cycles. Immaculately clean, bright and everything in its right place, one could not be anything other than impressed. We were no time waiting until sales executive Karen Woods came to assist. We asked for more time and eventually went back to her.
Apart from 12 new BMWs downstairs and 14 new Minis in their own adjoining showroom, they had 23 used cars upstairs on another floor. After we had climbed the spiral staircase, Karen explained and demonstrated the difference between M Sport and SE models. All cars carried prices.
Details on new models stood independently beside the cars. We studied the list, and marked out a 2008 520d M Sport for €36,495. She marked a 2010 SE 520d with only 3,100 Km for €41,900 and another automatic 2009 M Sport business edi-tion with 7,160 km for €42,995. Back at Karen’s desk, she told us they would take a car from the compound for us to view if we so wished.
Asked what discount we could expect, she explained the cars were already marked down in price but there might be €1,000. She invited us to view a new 5-series in its own specific showroom. She got us a brochure, price list and keys. We sat in. We could have a new 520 SE in August for €44,814.
“Possibly €500,’’ Karen replied. That was a turning point.
Despite the used cars being in impeccable condition, we could tax (€156) the brand new model and be driving the latest engineering piece from BMW. Karen told us a €2,000 deposit would secure the deal.
We thanked her and on the way out we went to view the Minis, where we met Alan Fitzgerald. We remembered him from 2006. Thankfully, he did not recognise us. Despite all the ups and downs since our last visit, we are glad to report that the high standards are still there at Joe Duffy.