Fleet News

Tax warning as pundits predict sales boom

FLEET buyers are set to embark on an August spending spree which will spearhead the strongest recovery the car industry has seen since the late 1980s.

The 1996 fleet market is already 6.8% up on 1995 levels for the first six months of the year and sales are set to beat last year's record 912,629. But at the same time David Knight, managing director of PHH Vehicle Management Services, the UK's largest fleet management company, has warned that a change in Government could burst the fleet bubble. Knight said a future Labour Government could tax company car drivers off the road.

The Autoglass Car Confidence Index shows that a higher number of drivers - 64% compared with 43% last year - will change their cars this year. Drivers also said job security was less of a concern - with only 64% admitting to insecurity compared with 80% last year.

Autoglass's findings reflect buoyant market predictions made earlier this year (Fleet News January 12) in which pundits predicted a two million car market with fleet sales accounting for around 50% of the total. Managing director Gary Lubner said: 'This August looks to be a particularly busy time with more and more fleets changing their cars. The Car Confidence Index says that over half of company car drivers will change their car this year. These confirm industry predictions that there will be a considerable surge in demand.'

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