Fleet News

RMIF concern over imports of vehicles from Republic

REGISTRATIONS of cars and vans from southern Ireland in the north is becoming an increasing problem according to the Retail Motor Industry Federation. Mervyn Stewart, Northern Ireland chairman of the RMIF, is calling on manufacturers to look at their marketing strategies in the north, when cars are being offered cheaper in the south.

He said: 'The importation of new cars and vans from the Republic of Ireland has become a major influence in our market.' Stewart said the two main factors are variations between the currencies and the pricing policies of manufacturers who charge different wholesale prices across European member states.

He said the blame does not lie with dealers in the Republic, but with the manufacturers. Stewart added: 'Almost 15% of cars and 58% of vans registered in Northern Ireland this year to the end of August were imported from the south. Some volume marques have suffered more than 30% penetration of new car registrations by importers who bypass the franchised dealer network.'

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