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Motor Trade Monthly Round Up October 2016

News From October

All the Motor Trade news from October that you need to know, summed up in the latest edition of the Motor Trade News Monthly Round Up.

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Recent Events

At the end of October, Skoda launched its new used car sale initiative pilot in West London. Nick O’Neill, the National Used Car Manager for Skoda said: “Anyone trading in and upgrading their Skoda will share information such as the car’s name, its personality traits and special family memories that it has helped to create. These details will then be passed on to potential customers so they can get to know more about their new car than just its mileage and service history. If successful, Skoda will extend the programme across its entire retail network.”

Meanwhile, Aston Martin has launched an approved used car scheme for its international network of 164 dealers. “Timeless” will cover Aston Martin models from the past decade, including the DB9 and the DBS amongst other iconic models. Christian Marti, Aston Martin VP and Chief Sales Officer, said: “I am very happy to see the launch of this new and improved pre-owned service. Additions such as the new inspection regime – which for the first time includes a comprehensive assessment and review of our cars’ software, as well as their technical condition – can only add confidence for our buyers.”

American new car dealership AutoNation is to launch a network of branded car and service centres across the UK, branded as AutoNation USA. 25 potential sites have been identified with a least five expected to open in 2017. Mike Jackson, Chairman, CEO and President, said, “We are pleased to announce the next phase of our comprehensive brand extension strategy, which will provide long-term growth opportunities for the company. We expect that our investments in this next phase of the company’s brand extension rollout, which may exceed $500 million in the aggregate, will continue for the next several years. We have built an industry-leading brand, and we remain committed to achieving and sustaining operational excellence, while creating a peerless customer experience and enhanced services throughout the automotive retail sector.”

Auto Trader are now allowing new cars to be listed on their website. In the new development, buyers can browse multiple variants including different colours and optional extras, however the actual cars may only exist as ‘virtual stock’. This means the existing stock of 67,000 nearly-new cars and 389,000 used cars that are displayed will still have the edge for buyers hoping for a quick purchase. Marc Palmer, the new Manufacturer Brand Director for Auto Trader said: “There are clearly many benefits for consumers looking for a new car on Auto Trader with the introduction of every new car available but this new proposition also opens up a huge new car audience on Auto Trader for car manufacturers, the scale of which they simply may have been unaware of before.”

Need To Know

Ford’s flagship people carrier, the Ford Galaxy, was the fastest selling car on Auto Trader in September, with the 2012 diesel engine automatic taking just 12 days on average to sell. Indeed, Fords have proved popular in September, with the 2015 Ford Kuga petrol manual, on average, taking 21 days to sell. Karolina Edwards-Smjada, the Retailer and Consumer Products Director for Auto Trader said: “The nation’s fastest selling cars reveal how quickly some used cars have shifted in September, a month known for new car sales. While September has proved a strong month for used Fords, knowing which cars will prove popular is key to identifying future sales opportunities.”

Euro Car Parts is set to offer lifetime warranties on a number of products in their range. Mechanical parts including steering racks, rotating electrics and clutch kits are all included. Martin Gray, UK CEO of Euro Car Parts, said: “This is another example of our commitment to the independent aftermarket. The warranty is for them to use as they like as either an additional product they can sell or as a marketing tool, giving customers another reason to seek the services of independent repairers when it comes to fixing their car. We’re offering a lifetime warranty through independents because we want to support them by providing another sales differentiator, giving them a further competitive edge against franchised dealers.”

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Interesting News

According to data gathered by Motors.co.uk, over 74% of car owners look at other brands when looking for a new car. The data was gathered through part-exchange enquiries and car valuation requests. However the most loyal car owners were Audi owners, who 50% of the time enquired about a newer Audi.

Good News

The used car market is set to reach a record high this year, with total sales of 7.6 million forecasted by Cap HPI. Phillip Nothard, the Consumer and Retail Specialist at Cap HPI said: “Strong demand has underpinned a stable market in 2016. Although we have seen larger volumes, values have tracked established seasonal trends. The trend looks set to make 2016 a marquee year, up 5.5% on a blockbuster 2015. While recent predictions from the SMMT set some doubt about the new car market in 2017, the used market has much to feel bullish about.”

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