Fleet News

Hot-hatch comeback as models make top prices

FLEET operators who stayed loyal to hot-hatchback drivers three years ago are being rewarded as the cars go to auction. However, many more fleets have banned the cars from user-chooser lists as insurance companies reacted to the rising tide of car theft by boosting premiums.

But now - just as with new hot-hatches (Fleet News April 26) - the ex-fleet hot-hatch is making a comeback with demand pushing up auction prices. According to Lex Vehicle Leasing, cars such as the Golf GTi, Fiesta XR2i, Peugeot 205 GTi and Escort Cosworth are making excellent prices in the secondhand market.

Lex marketing director Richard Koster said the saga had been caused by a knee jerk reaction by insurance companies starting in the early 1990s. The companies reacted to their huge motor losses by increasing premiums on cars they perceived as high risk - such as hot-hatches. The knock-on effect was that fleet managers rethought their buying policies and such cars were crossed off the lists. As a result sales of new hot-hatches dived. It is only now that the secondhand market is seeing the effect.

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