Dynamic Motors, the Isuzu Brand Custodian in the East Coast of Malaysia
The name Dynamic Motors in Kuantan is no stranger to government or private agencies as well as to the common folk. The company, founded way back in 1987, is a key player in the trucking business.
It is an authorized 3S (Sales, Service & Spare Parts) Dealer of the Isuzu brand, and people around the eastern region of Malaysia are accustomed to the quality of their service and staff.
Apart from the above, it provides vehicle loan services, commercial vehicle inspection, renewal services and commercial vehicle SPAD Haulage Permit application services. The basic insurance and road tax renewal services are offered as well as vehicle trade-in.
X-1R’s Area Sales Representative, Raymond Ng, with Dynamic Motors Service & Parts Consultant, Khairul Azlan.
We were invited for a Customer Day last week and the guys running the show were keen to impress patrons with a service package comprising free 35-point inspection, 20% on selected parts, free meals and games for kids as well as free gifts. The Isuzu I-clinic ran during the months of August and September.
So, if you’re in need of a pick-up like the D-Max or an SUV like the MU-X or if you plan to expand your fleet with trucks that are robust, simple to maintain and, most importantly, easy on the wallet, Isuzu would be a wise choice.
We spoke to Khairul and asked him to give us an update on the company and their plans for the future and what it’s like working in the industry :
A: We heard you will be expanding soon. Tell us about it.
K: Well, yes, we will be expanding to a bigger place, where it will be a 4S Isuzu centre. Construction is ongoing and we are looking forward to getting everything running before 2020. There will be a new building which can service the heavy duty trucks like the prime movers. Moreover, the land is ours so the process to get things done can be faster.
We are renting this land we are on right now but it is sub-let by three companies, whereby our boss has rented out two other plots to others. This place is able to accommodate the number of trucks we service. But we will be moving soon and it will be a much bigger place than what you see now.
A: Nice. And how long have you been with Dynamic Motors?
K: I have been here for the past three years. Prior to this, I was with Igreen Sdn Bhd in Petaling Jaya. And before that, I was with Isuzu Malaysia.
A: So you’re a true blue Isuzu fella?
K: (Laughs.) Yes, I am. My first job after school was at Isuzu till this day. That’s about seven years already. There’s still so much to learn. There are many others out there who have been in the industry longer than I have lived, so that is rather humbling to know. It keeps one grounded. But we must always keep learning and improving. I’m from Bentong, Pahang so I am familiar with ways of the people in this part of the country.
A: Isuzu has got a reputation for being durable and fuel-efficient.
K: Yes, it does. Let’s talk about CV (commercial vehicle) in which we have been the winner for the past seven years with our ‘Green Engine’. Isuzu has won the Asian Auto Fuel Efficiency test for the last six years. In the Dura-Miles Challenge, a D-Max was driven through three countries – Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore – completing 1,809km on less than a tank of fuel.
A: There is a wide range of variants for the light-duty trucks. Six variants, right?
K: Yes, there have few variants like the NLR, NPR, NQR, NQS and there are variants broken down further into other categories and these are just the light-duty trucks. Isuzu’s direction right now is producing green engine vehicles, which helps tremendously in fuel consumption.
A: So how would you rate your competitors?
K: For the trucks, our closest competitor is Hino. In the pick-up truck market, there are a few players like Toyota, Ford, etc. Each of them has their own benefits and features, but we pride ourselves on optimal fuel consumption and robustness of the engine. Our trucks are for the agriculture, construction, logistics and even law enforcement agencies; many of them are looking to save as much fuel as possible. And having a solid engine like Isuzu’s gives them that peace of mind.
You see, the Japanese culture does not like to waste and they make vehicles that reduce pollution or rather don’t waste what it is not supposed to be wasted. They like to save. So, this philosophy is ingrained in Isuzu engineers. As Japan has undulating terrain – going up and downhill – they needed power. So they made vehicles that can adapt to this, like the 4JK1 engine that was a green engine.
In Thailand and the Philippines, they have engines called ‘Blue Engine’. The full name for it is RZ4E Blue Power turbodiesel which is a 1.9 cc engine. However, here in Malaysia, we have the 2.5 and 3.0 engines on the D-Max. We can’t bring it in here immediately as we have to look at market conditions and pricing as well as other already available variants we have in our line-up. It may or may not be made available here, but it does give customers a choice between power and efficiency. But that’s for the top management to decide. I’m happy and excited to look after our existing customers.
Customers from Isuzu D-Max RT50 Club Malaysia.
A: Who would be your main customers? We know that in this part of the world, there is a lot of development.
K: We are thankful for the support of governmental bodies, like Pengurusan Air Pahang Berhad (Pahang Water Management Berhad), Pengurusan Terengganu (Terengganu Management) and also the customs department, who bought a few units of our D-Max Z Prestige variant, as they travel a lot and would like something comfortable yet fuel efficient. We even have customers from PERKESO (Social Security Organisation), KWSP (Employees Provident Fund) and many others.
These customers know the quality and fuel efficiency of our trucks and pickups, which ultimately saves them loads of money. And to these guys, be it from construction to agriculture to transportation, every single cent counts.
A: And which would be your best seller?
K: Our best seller is the RT series. This is from the D-Max range and there are a whole bunch of codes like RT70, RT75, RT80…and you met the guys from the RT50 Club. But overall, the RT series is basically our bread and butter. The RT is a green engine and an evolution from the previous model. It’s a VGS twin turbo where it has double fins and although the horsepower isn’t high, the torque is for the given band.
A: And your vehicles have reasonable torque.
K: Yes, as the terrain in these areas is very jungle-like, it makes sense to have a higher torque as compared to horsepower. Some people look at horsepower while others are interested in torque numbers. For the people who know about performance and such, they will look at the torque capability of a vehicle.
A: And as one of the top dealers in this region, apart from customer day and the customary marketing from Isuzu, what other way does the principle support you?
K: Isuzu has an event which they participate in called Borneo Safari. Isuzu Malaysia has been a main sponsor for the past decade. Any dealer from Malaysia — we have more than 50 dealers — who wants to participate can do so with their own vehicle and Isuzu Malaysia will support them during the event. This also fosters friendship and teamwork while we get to experience first-hand the toughness of the vehicle and work on challenges that come our way. I can tell you, it’s no joke living in the jungle for almost 2 weeks – I went in 2016 – but it is one amazing experience.
We also participate in events like roadshows where we can interact with other groups. For instance, there will be other industries like property players or the health industry players. People looking at other booths will definitely come to our booth and it is an opportunity for us to explain to customers about our product.
We also work very closely with the Isuzu aftersales team — if any parts need to be replaced or we need to fix a certain thing, they are always very supportive of us. The CEO of Isuzu Malaysia. Koji Nakamura, has made it his goal to better the aftersales experience because it is extremely important.
A: How do you retain customers? What do you do differently?
K: Well, there is nothing different apart from consistently following the blueprint. What I mean is that firstly, we need to have a good product and provide a good experience to the customer. By consistently having a good product as well as providing a great experience to the customer, you will definitely retain a customer. But everyone needs to play their part, from the frontliners to the backliners; every component is important.
In our service centre, the customers must be treated warmly, the place must be clean, the service area must be efficient. Everything is like a jigsaw puzzle when you have placed all the pieces together then you sell the full picture.
A: What is the breakdown of sales and after-sales here?
K: Previously we were very focused on sales but our new CEO has made it his mandate that the aftersale is top priority. Every CEO has their own special way of doing things, according to the market, their goals and projections at that period of time. In Japan, it is 70% aftersales and 30% sales, so the shift now is more towards these percentages.
A: How do you differentiate between the fly-by-night workshops and a service centre because there are many customers who say, for instance, servicing in a former costs about RM200-250 (for example) and the service centre charges around RM400-500. There is a vast disparity in pricing and they will opt for the cheaper service.
K : Yes, we understand their concern but we have found that it is not necessarily true. We do a 35-point check whereas those workshops probably just change the oil, oil filter and clean the air filter or have it replaced. 35-point check and a 3-point check is a massive difference. Of course, there will be an extra cost incurred but bear in mind, it is for the safety and convenience of the customer and for us to ensure we take care of the vehicle.
On top of that, we have everything recorded, but at times, these workshops don’t even issue a receipt. And when there is an issue, the buck is always passed around or downright rebuked in some cases. So which would you rather choose?
Furthermore, service centre sells genuine parts. One may say that at these kedai bawah pokok (fly-by-night workshops) sell the similar grade or almost on par with an original. Remember, parts come with a warranty and if you were to purchase a part from another shop, they don’t have or very seldom come with a warranty.
And we have tools and certified technicians to assist a customer or company.
A: Ok. Say from 10 customers whose warranty period has finished, how many of them return to service with you?
K: I would say half. After the warranty is over, we have customers from big companies who would rather have their sub-contracted workshops service the vehicles. Our goal is retaining half of them and work on increasing it. We want to prove to these customers that for a cost that is slightly more than what they get outside, it is better to just return to the service centre.
And if they intend to sell their vehicle(s) in the future, a full service record with a service centre adds to the value. Our focus for today’s customer day is on customers who have not been here, have lapsed warranty period and customers who have purchased from us but never returned to us for service. We also engage with clubs and promote our products and services.
We have customers from the port or industrial sites, where the vehicles are extensively used and need to be serviced regularly. When we move to our new place, we can accommodate more trucks.
Anyone can get a customer but retaining them and looking after them is key. It’s not only the customer that must be treated well but we must always remember the people working with us. I have seen companies where the customers are treated like gold but the staff are treated terribly. That should not be the way. Everyone must be treated with respect. Only then will the customer and your staff feel appreciated.
A: Yes, that’s vital. And you have family day and gatherings.
K: Yes, we do. When I joined, I started a family and gathering thereafter. These gatherings and activities create a bond amongst the team.
If there’s an issue or misunderstanding, we have to clear it on the spot and not let it fester. I have seen it happen before and I don’t want it happening here. Sometimes, we lose a good staff because of that. A good atmosphere is vital. When the atmosphere among everyone is good, the company can progress further.
A: Wise words indeed. Thank you for spending the time talking to us.
K: No worries. It is my pleasure and thank you. Drive safe.
The DNA of Isuzu is reliability, durability and fuel efficiency. What more could one ask for?
If you would like to get in touch with Dynamic Motors Sdn Bhd, here the contact details: Lot 6024, Jalan Beserah, 25300, Kuantan , Pahang. Tel : +603-09-566 8898.