Fleet News

Currency fluctuation a major factor in car price disparity

A EUROPEAN Union report on car pricing throughout Europe has admitted that currency fluctuation is a major factor in price disparity throughout the Continent. While car prices in the UK still remain higher than many countries in Europe, the size of the difference reduced between May and November, a period when the value of Sterling was in decline.

The latest European Commission report on car pricing indicates that price differences measured on November 1, 1998 have 'significantly decreased' when compared with a similar survey carried out on May 1, 1998. However, it also added that pricing changes among manufacturers had also made a difference, with rises in some of the cheapest countries having the most effect.

And in a statement, the EC told car makers it was still faced with many complaints by customers, mainly UK residents, who encountered 'obstacles' on car purchase in other member states. The report was immediately welcomed by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders as a vindication of its claims that manufacturers were not to blame for much of the price difference between countries.

The EC report showed that a British-built Rover 214 has the largest price difference between the most expensive country, the UK, and the cheapest country, France. It is 51.9% more expensive in the UK.

The Consumers' Association renewed attacks it made to the Trade and Industry select committee that the car industry was 'ripping off' consumers, using high prices for private buyers to supplement fleet discounts.

Leave a comment for your chance to win £20 of John Lewis vouchers.

Every issue of Fleet News the editor picks his favourite comment from the past two weeks – get involved for your chance to appear in print and win!

Login to comment

Comments

No comments have been made yet.

Compare costs of your company cars

Looking to acquire new vehicles? Check how much they'll cost to run with our Car Running Cost calculator.

What is your BIK car tax liability?

The Fleet News car tax calculator lets you work out tax costs for both employer and employee