September 27, 2014

3 days, 70 miles and £7,000

When it comes to buying new cars it seems that there is still a long way to go before buyers and sellers can reach an agreement around price and, as they both have a vested interest in being at opposite ends of the pricing scale if you like, then perhaps they never will. More worrying is that despite major improvements both in technology, … [Read more...]

Never buy a car for friends or family

When you are in the business of selling cars, never, ever sell to friends and family it nearly always ends in tears. For some reason when serving a family member or friend they always expect that it be the cheapest, lowest mileage and cleanest example previously owned by a little old local lady who only went to the shops and back, and of course … [Read more...]

Lead times lead to confusion

The fact that many car makers are struggling to supply new cars within an acceptable time frame is causing real concern for many dealers and they are losing customers to rival brands as a result. Even the ultra efficient Germans BMW, Audi and VW are being affected along with many others and sales personnel now have the unenviable task of trying … [Read more...]

Caution pays when buying a used car

During an economic downturn or periods of economic uncertainty it is more important than ever to ensure that any car you buy or service you pay for is legitimate. We in the trade always look a little more closely at part exchanges and all the supporting paperwork. For example when someone says their car has a “full service history” is that … [Read more...]

Car Makers Premier League – August 2010

It’s time once more for the Car Makers Premier League where each and every month we examine the top 20 manufacturers by number of units registered and see just how they look when compared with the previous month. At the end of the year who will be crowned champion? Who will drop out of the top 20 as the year unfolds and which high achievers will be … [Read more...]

As used car prices heat up could demand swing back to new cars?

As the trickle of part exchanges arrive at action the distinct lack of cars has begun to re-heat demand. Most of the major auction houses have had many more buyers for far fewer cars and as a result some cars have been making, what we call in the trade, 'Brewster’s'. This was kind of predicted and may very well be only be temporary in nature … [Read more...]

Plate change mundanity

I know we probably say it every year about this time and sorry for being boring but things just aren’t the same! I visited a few showrooms on the 1st in the hope that all staff would be far too busy to have time for me and look incredulously at me whilst exclaiming “don’t you know it’s the 1st of September?!” Well at the places I visited all the … [Read more...]

Driving green could take you into the red

Car makers and their franchised dealer networks are facing a dilemma; they want to sell “green” cars that help the planet and reduce co2 emissions but in reality are still failing to appeal successfully to the majority of the car buying public and are thus still some way from getting buyers to consider them in any great numbers. I wouldn’t … [Read more...]

Kia exceeding expectations

exceed

In the past here on MTI we have tended not to do too many car reviews. This was mainly because we thought the web was awash with them and our contributors preferred to voice their opinion about what they saw as other more pressing matters. Despite this the reviews we have done have all proved popular so we know there is an appetite for them. At … [Read more...]

Q couldn’t make it up!

We always scratch our heads when we don’t receive good service, OK we probably don’t we just get upset, but for the purposes of this article we scratch our heads. A situation which happens far too regularly and doesn’t seem to go away maybe illustrates why getting the service part right is so vital. Here’s the story, see if it sounds familiar; … [Read more...]

Order takers stand aside – it’s time to get back to selling cars

As September approaches dealers are scratching their heads thinking about how to encourage sales, which have been affected by various events. Last year the scrappage scheme was in full flow and was being marketed very well by the government and for many dealers it basically led to a procession of what we in the trade call ‘hands up ‘ customers … [Read more...]

Will VW say adiós to Seat?

adios-seat

How much has changed at Seat in the last 60 years? Not a great deal it appears since its humble beginnings. A tie-up between the Spanish government and Fiat saw Spain’s first car manufacturer take off. By re-badging the Fiat 600 and later the Panda, Seat struck a chord with cheap and affordable motoring and by 1967 Fiat increased its shareholding … [Read more...]

Toyota still riding out the storm

It seems that although Toyota left no stone unturned in their pursuit of saving their reputation (spending a £3bn marketing budget in the process) not everyone is convinced that they have totally succeeded. According to some of our sources in the world of Toyota things have somewhat stagnated and many people are seemingly just not convinced at … [Read more...]

Dodgy dealers clocked by VOSA

Over the years the car trade has unfortunately been blighted by bad practices and fraudulent actions, one of the worst being clocked cars, which leads to nothing but misery for drivers and distrust and contempt cast upon all car sellers. A car is "clocked" if someone interferes with the odometer (the mileage reading) and while it’s not actually … [Read more...]

Are car dealers frightened of social media?

It appears so as less than 10 percent of the UK's top 200 car dealers are represented on social networking sites and most of those probably only use it because they think they should or that there marketing departments think they should. As a Google employee recently commented social media is like teen sex, everyone wants to do it but no one … [Read more...]

East meets west as Malaysia’s car industry takes off

Having just spent several weeks on holiday in Malaysia, I was fascinated to read an article on the current state of car sale figures in the country. Other than the government pitching Malaysia as the world’s number one holiday destination for 2011, my first stop-over in Kuala Lumpur showed that Malaysia really is on the rise, and I'm not just … [Read more...]

Diesel do nicely

With fuel prices spiralling out of control once more, car drivers are being hit where it hurts more than most. What with VAT set to rise and new car prices having already creeping upwards It makes the job of finding a car which will not cost the national debt to maintain that much harder. It seems it is either price hikes or cuts but no increase in … [Read more...]

Used cars are always unique

Why do customers choose certain cars over others? Well that is certainly the $64,000 question and if we knew the definitive answer we could probably sell the formula for a lot of money. In the car trade there is one thing we can be sure of and that is if we have a car with what we call a unique selling point we can be fairly confident that the car … [Read more...]

September could be bleak for new car sales

New car sales numbers are down for July by some 13% and not likely to improve much for August. The real worry however is September. According to our sources forward orders for the new reg plate are a fraction of what would normally be expected. However, for the consumer, this could be good news because there will be a reaction from both the … [Read more...]

Selling cars is no laughing matter

I was having a pint with an old colleague who 'made his money and got out' and we were chewing the fat about the good old days where you could actually have a laugh whilst doing your job. He was commenting on the fact that today’s “modern salesperson” might not even go for a drink after work and discuss the days play if you like, and where, by … [Read more...]

MPV demand stays strong as more holidays are taken in the UK

|The summer moves along at a pace and on my recent camping holiday (Roman Abramovich’s yacht was booked up unfortunately) I couldn’t help noticing how many “sensible” cars I saw parked next to the tents. It appears that with many of us deciding, for economic reasons, to holiday in the UK we are also snapping up MPV’s and estates (station wagons, … [Read more...]

It’s time to stamp out overpriced car servicing

Franchised car dealers are under pressure like never before from independent repairers offering ultra-competitive deals on car servicing. We have already started to see large fleet and rental companies opt for using Kwik-Fit for their annual servicing on their cars, much to the frustration of dealers who feel that they should be getting that work. … [Read more...]

Shrinking number of used cars to retail leads to a change in thinking

We are always pointing out here at MTI how difficult it is going to be for dealers to find quality retailable used car stock in future due to the shrinking car parc. There will be less of the previously owned cars which dealers have traditionally vied for. In other words 1-3 year old cars with fewer than 40k miles which are still in warranty … [Read more...]

Car Makers Premier League – July 2010

It’s time once more for the Car Makers Premier League where each and every month we examine the top 20 manufacturers by number of units registered and see just how they look when compared with the previous month. At the end of the year who will be crowned champion? Who will drop out of the top 20 as the year unfolds and which high achievers will be … [Read more...]

Happy staff equals happy customers

There is much talk at present about how the retail car sales business can improve the service it delivers to its customers. As a result a greater emphasis than perhaps ever before is being put on training and coaching staff to be better equipped to offer an enhanced experience whilst at the same time draw satisfaction from the process. The buzz … [Read more...]