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Meet our Hendon Hub Manager Mo

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Featuring a massive showroom and a cosy customer lounge, the new Otto Hendon hub was opened in February 2023. 

We’ve caught up with our Hendon Hub Manager Mohamed Salah, as he shares how the hub offers a whole new experience to drivers, future plans, and the best place to eat around Hendon and Colindale. 

How long have you joined Otto Car? 

I initially joined Otto Car in 2016 and had an extensive period with the business. I still remember the company having just around 300 vehicles. I had also happened to witness how the Hammersmith hub was transformed into the hub that we all know today. Things have changed since!

How does your work experience help you understand driver needs?

Before joining Otto Car, I worked in the car-sharing industry with several different companies as Operations Manager, focusing on car-sharing. 

Things have obviously changed a lot. The needs of drivers and government rules are so much different now. PCO cars that drivers are interested in have also changed. But the one thing that hasn’t is the fact that convenience will always be one of the most important factors in this industry. 

In terms of experience, it’s more of the day-to-day issues that drivers or their vehicles face, what they need in terms of compliance, such as MOT regulation and road tax, and making sure that the cars are fit to be on the road. We’re here to help our drivers. 

The Otto Car Hendon Hub showroom displays a wide range of PCO cars, including electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids.

How are you finding this new Hendon hub?

The recently opened Hendon hub is brilliant. It’s very spacious. I think it offers something different to all of our other hubs. 

Whenever a driver is interested in a particular vehicle, whether it’s the electric Kia Niro EV, or a plug-in hybrid like the Hyundai Ioniq Plug-in for example, we tend to have them at Hendon. 

In this way, drivers can come and have a full experience. They can potentially do a test drive during the driving assessment before they sign up to our Rent 2 Buy + plan.

How is the Hendon hub different from the one in Colindale?

The experiences will be a little bit different. While the Colindale hub is a claim centre and a body shop where we mainly help drivers get back on the road as soon as possible, here at Hendon the majority of the drivers tend to be new customers. 

Interestingly, I think we get more walk-ins than those who have booked an appointment. This hub has only been open for about six weeks, but I believe more customers and drivers will be made more aware of us here as we promote it more. Find out where the Hendon hub is here.

The Kia Niro EV is Otto Car's most popular PCO vehicle

How has the PCO industry changed over the years in your opinion?

I think initially all the drivers were very price driven, for example they wanted to get the most fuel-efficient car with the best mpg, that’s why the Prius has been so popular and dominating the market for so long. 

And now with fully electric vehicles, the PCO industry as well as others are adjusting themselves and preparing for what London is trying to achieve. 

Like what we’ve just seen from the news, London has been given £35.7m to invest in its electric vehicle charge points. At this moment we have almost 13,000 chargers in London, and the aim is to get between 40,000 to 60,000 chargers by 2030. The initial problem of the availability of EV chargers is going to be something of the past – because the investment is there, and the infrastructure will meet the demands. 

What’s your most unforgettable experience at Otto Car?

Right, there’s been a lot of moments. I’ll give an example – the TfL had changed the rules on who can apply for the PCO licence, or do the renewals, and they introduced the TfL English test.  

We had a lot of drivers concerned at that time, worrying about not being able to renew their licence. As I’m qualified to teach English as a foreign language, we organised free English classes and invited all the drivers that showed concern or had questions. 

We went through all their questions and I reassured them by showing them sample questions from the test. Many of them came in extremely worried, you could see on their faces, and they left with more confidence. This is definitely an unforgettable and meaningful experience for me.

New to PCO driving? Read our latest guide on how to get a PCO licence here.

Otto Car Hendon Hub Manager Mohamed Salah and the fully electric Hyundai Ioniq 5

What are the best spots for PCO drivers to go around Hendon?

There’s a food court nearby called the Bang Bang Oriental Food Hall. There are 20+ restaurants serving food from all over the world, with an extensive selection of Asian food. That’s probably my number one recommended place to visit. 

Any future plans that you could share with us?

We’re definitely going to increase customer awareness. We aim to get as many new customers as possible here. We may organise some experience days so they can check out the vehicles, and meet us as a business. That’s what we’re trying to achieve, and we have the space to do it. 

What do you want to say to our family of PCO drivers in Hendon?

We’re really happy to be part of the Hendon community. This is an area that has a rich history, with the RAF base for example. So yes, we’re very glad to be a part of this community. 

Otto Car's Hendon Hub showroom displays new and used, electric and hybrid PCO cars

We have five Otto hubs all across London including Shepherd’s Bush, Hendon, Ilford, Hackney and Dulwich. Feel free to visit and have a chat with the Otto Team today. 

Shepherd’s Bush: 192 Goldhawk Rd, London W12 9NS
Hendon: Unit 3 Hyde Estate Rd, London NW9 6JX
Dulwich: F05, Parkhall Business Centre, 40 Martell Rd, London SE21 8EN
Ilford: The Vintry, 53 Redbridge Ln E, London IG4 5EY
Hackney: Excel Building, 16 Arbutus St, London E8 4DT

Want to learn more?

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