Fleet News

Anger at minister's internet plug

THE car industry has expressed its astonishment that the Government appears to be endorsing the use of internet businesses offering cut-price cars from the Continent to bypass the established UK dealer network. Patricia Hewitt, former Economic Secretary to the Treasury, launched OneSwoop.com, which claims to be the first pan-European online car buying service, in her new role as minister e-commerce and small business.

A spokesman for the Society for Motor Manufacturers and Traders said the DTI's apparent endorsement of OneSwoop.com was 'astonishing'. 'When Byers is virtually holed-up at the DTI, saying nothing on the sensitive subject of car pricing, it's highly insensitive that Hewitt should be taking such a high profile stance on the issue.' And Alan Pulham, director of the Retail Motor Industry Federation, also called Hewitt's actions 'insensitive'.

But the DTI insisted Hewitt's involvement was part of a high profile campaign to encourage businesses to seize the opportunities presented by the internet before losing them to the competition.

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


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