Leslies Motors is our family run business that was founded in 1948 and was based in Sandown, Isle of Wight. The business has gone from strength to strength in the hands of 3 generations of the Vanassche family.
Leslies has seen many motor vehicle franchises over the years, some coming full circle (Hyundai was a member of the Leslies group many years ago, and returned in 2015 when Wight Motors became a member of the Leslies family). Leslies has also been based in many locations around the Island over the years, but the current location of Northwood Garage (Leslies Kia and Mazda) was first moved into 38 years ago!
In the early 90’s Graham Vanassche took over the day to day running of the business from his father, and founder, Leslie Vanassche. This was roughly the same time that Hale Common Suzuki became part of the family, now known as Leslies Suzuki. Kia moved to Somerton in 2008 until 2011 when it moved up to its current site, Northwood Garage.
In 2015, Leslies Motors acquired ownership of Wight Motors in Sandown from the Butler family. Wight Motors has a very rich history of its own, founded 90 years ago, the business has also gone from strength to strength. In May 1975, Wight Motors opened a new premises on College Close in Sandown and the official opening was attended by Miss United Kingdom and former Miss World, Helen Morgan, who greeted visitors. The showroom at the Sandown site was further extended in 1979 and Roy and Barbara Butler took over in the early 1990s. In 2006, Wight Motors left Ryde altogether and moved into a brand new showroom in Sandown, with its 2 successful franchises, Leslies Toyota and Hyundai.
In 2019, Leslies Motors opened its brand new state-of-the-art showroom in Blackwater, and moved Toyota over to this new location. At our new showroom we use sustainable resources to run our business, with recycled water to wash the cars, courtesy e-bikes, solar panels and the Isle of Wight's largest selection of hybrid vehicles. After a long process building the site, we finally moved Toyota into the new dealership in September of 2019.