jump to navigation

What I learnt… from Fleet News, 20 March 2009 March 20, 2009

Posted by Richard Aucock in What I learned today.
Tags: , , , , ,
add a comment

So far, new car sales have fallen by 28 percent. The new car market is predicted to fall from over 2 million new car sales, to 1.7 million sales, or less.

Yet the SMMT says it could be boosted by 250,000 sales in an 18-month period by a new car scrappage scheme.

what-i-learnt-from-fleet-news-20-march-2009It would have to incorporate nearly new green cars to be of any benefit, though, a leasing company boss told Fleet News. Surprisingly, he said this would have to cover cars up to four years old.

This would stimulate the used car market and thus boost the new car market.

But, isn’t the used market already thriving, as buyers seek extra value? Aren’t car auctions seeing record results and a shortage of stock? I think he’s barking up the wrong tree here.

… Fleet sales once accounted for over half the new car market. Now, due to the recession, it’s down to 44.8 percent. Retail sales are, relatively, booming, taking 55.2 percent.

This is despite reports that retail customers are sitting tight, waiting for the Government to decide on a scrappage scheme. If it comes, I’d expect the proportion to become even more skewed.

… Those fields of cars we keep seeing on the news are just an illusion. Actually, fleet bosses say, there are not loads of cars sitting ready to go. So, huge fleet discounts are not on the table. One chief told Fleet News that swingeing cutbacks by car makers last year have slashed inventories.

… Car makers making the best of the recession include Ford, whose market share is approaching 20 percent – a massive increase on 15 percent last year. French makers are struggling, though. Citroen has 2.8 percent, Peugeot 3.8 percent (down from 6.1 percent) and Renault just 2.7 percent (down from 5.7 percent).