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Motor Trade News Monthly Round Up October 2017

Hybrids are back in the Round Up as well as consumer attitude news, MOT news and why you need a good Motor Trade insurance policy.

More Brexit news in the Motor Trade News Monthly Round Up as the motor trade industry starts to get anxious about the negative economic effects of a ‘no deal’ Brexit…

motor trade brexit news

Brexit Motor Trade News

The Retail Motor Industry Federation has called on the government to engage with the industry on Brexit. Speaking on 19th October at the annual RMI dinner, Peter Johnson, the RMI Chairman, said: “It is vital that the government encourages both economic and consumer confidence and enables investment, in order for the retail motor industry to progress and thrive in a stable environment.

“The UK’s automotive sector is a global leader and the future state and success of the industry could be jeopardised if a trade deal is not secured to allow tariff free access to the European single market, following our vote to leave the EU. It is now essential that the government makes a commitment to outline a clear negotiating position in order to ensure our industry has what it needs to secure its future success.”

Hybrid News

With the rise of hybrids and electric vehicles in the wake of the slow death of diesels, the Institute of the Motor Industry has been lobbying the House of Lords on its concern for motor traders repairing EVs and hybrids. After meeting with representatives from the Department for Transport, the House of Lords IMI Chief Executive, Steve Nash, said: “The need for regulation for any vehicle technician working with electric and hybrid vehicles is becoming increasingly more evident with the demand for these vehicles proliferating beyond anyone’s expectation.

“The meetings we’ve had with key parliamentary figures have been reassuring, providing us with an opportunity to share our research in order to demonstrate the lack of health and safety regulation around this technology.” 

“The IMI’s campaign has gained backing from each area of the automotive sector, ranging from small independent workshops to the vehicle manufacturers.  All understand the importance of putting in place a criteria for anyone maintaining and repairing ultra-low emission vehicles.”

Meanwhile dealers have seen an increase in hybrid sales in recent weeks amid a decline for diesel sales, that's according to research from

Consumer Attitudes

A What Car? survey has found that the average customer satisfaction score for independent garages is 92.2 percent. The survey, which quizzed more than 8,000 motorists, asked them how impressed they were with their latest service. It included things such as quality of the work, value for money and staff politeness. Independents had a better average customer satisfaction score by over six percent, compared to franchises.

However, attitudes towards independent garages aren’t great when it comes to the safest place for customers to take their cars to get serviced, according to the Autumn 2017 NFDA Consumer Attitude Survey. It found that only 22% of consumers think that independent garages are the safest, in comparison to 67% for franchised dealers. Independents still beat high street chains, which only managed 11%.

A recent study from Servicing Stop asked over 1,100 motorists how independents could match the standard of dealerships. Of those polled, 37 percent said technicians with more extensive knowledge of the industry would help, and 35 percent said improved customer service would also benefit them. 

The Chief Executive for Servicing Stop, Oly Richmond, said: “There’s apparently four things motorists want from independents. Skilled staff, better customer service, clean premises and a friendly cuppa. Work your magic on these four things and you’ll retain more customers.”

According to a survey from Allianz Worldwide Partners UK, “clear and easy to understand policy wording” may influence 36 percent of motorists (surveyed) to purchase a warranty. Head of Warranty at Allianz Worldwide Partners UK, Liz Grindell, said: “Our research confirms that 45 percent of motorists are still unsure about what exactly is covered by a warranty offering, and this lack of understanding reduces their likelihood to buy. Simply put, it’s important to assist customers’ understanding of a warranty to help them decide if it’s right for them.

“This is backed by analysis of consumer activity on our online warranty sales platforms. Visitors prefer ‘what’s covered’ tables, FAQs and jargon busting glossaries over paragraphs of detailed text. And it’s important to note that customers like to be provided with this type of information when interacting directly with dealers.”

MOT News DSVA Customer Service changes

MOT News

From the 1st November, the DVSA Customer Service Centre MOT Admin Support will have specifically trained administrators for MOT enquiries. The DVSA said: “From 1st November, the DVSA customer service centre will deal with all telephone calls about MOT administration enquires. The contact number is 0300 123 9000 and is open Monday to Friday, 7:30am to 6pm.

“Previous contact numbers for the area offices will redirect to the DVSA customer service centre. The DVSA MOT hub will handle all MOT administration enquiries received by post and email.”

Why You Need To Have A Good Motor Trade Insurance Policy

A garage was left with over £30,000 worth of damage after local kids ran riot on their premises, leaving a trail of destruction including a number of vehicles being written off. The damage was caused by one 11-year-old and three children under 10. The 11-year-old was given a conditional caution whilst the children under 10 years old faced no action due to their age.

Garage owner Darren Idle said: “We feel failed by the system. We feel like we’re not getting anywhere or getting any justice. I know that when I was 11, I knew right from wrong and my two daughters did from a very early age.”

Inspector Richard Clarke, of Leeds South neighbourhood policing team, said: “This was obviously a serious offence which resulted in a considerable amount of damage caused to the vehicles and a thorough investigation was carried out.

“Due to the young age of those involved, one of the suspects was prosecuted and received a youth conditional caution. Decisions on the appropriate method of dealing with young people involved in crime are considered very carefully and the Crown Prosecution Service are routinely involved at an early stage. In cases where the offenders are children, the opinion of specialists within the Youth Offending Service is also sought.”

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