The UK new car market is continuing to suffer, with a dramatic drop in diesel sales leading to a twelfth consecutive month of decline. New figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) show that sales figures in March 2018 dropped by 15.7% compared to the same month last year. However, March 2017 was the biggest month on record for new car sales, as buyers seized the chance to purchase vehicles before new Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) rates came into force. The SMMT states that despite this large drop, March 2018 still represents the fourth biggest since registration tracking began. As new 18 plate vehicles came to dealer forecourts, 474,069 units were sold, compared to 562,337 during 2017. That was the last month of sales growth in the country, representi...
The Motor Ombudsman, the automotive dispute resolution provider, is pleased to announce that it has upgraded its online consumer reviews tool on its Garage Finder. The refreshed design and layout makes it easier and quicker for any customer to express their opinions and evaluate a Motor Ombudsman-accredited franchised dealer or independent garage following a vehicle purchase or service. Using the “Rate” button on a garage’s profile, a customer can select the relevant Code of Practice survey, namely Vehicle Sales, after buying a new or used car, or Service and Repair after having any work carried out on their vehicle. They are then able to score different aspects of their experience of the business based on a one to ten star rating. These include the booking process, the quality of w
Wheel alignment firm Absolute Alignment has announced two new motorsport partnerships, and will be represented in the Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) and the British GT Championship. Absolute Alignment’s 2018 racing calendar features a total of five motorsport disciplines, and more than 40 race meetings, taking the Farnborough-based outfit to no less than 19 race tracks all across the country, into Europe and the USA. New for this season, the company has become an Official Technical Partner to Power Maxed TAG Racing in the BTCC, and will be supporting Academy Motorsport’s Aston Martin V8 Vantage GT4 entries in British GT. This is in addition to Absolute Alignment’s existing partnerships with Welch Motorsport in the highly-competitive Porsche Carrera Cup, and
The headlights of some newer cars are so bright they are causing a road safety hazard for drivers with as many as two-thirds (65%) of motorists saying they regularly get dazzled by oncoming headlights even though they are dipped. 15% of motorists surveyed by the RAC claim they have suffered a near-miss as a result of being dazzled by modern headlights that they believe are too bright. While it is well known that older drivers often have difficulty when driving at night due to glare from headlights, the RAC findings about the dazzling effect of some new car headlights were similar among drivers of all ages. A range of different types of headlights are fitted to UK vehicles from the traditional halogen headlamps to the brighter, newer xenon, or high intensity discharge, lights whic...
The Independent Automotive Aftermarket Federation (IAAF) has announced two new members joining its fold. Mobiletron, manufacturer of engine management sensors and rotating electronics, and TVS EAG (Excel), supplier of steering and suspension parts, will both be able to take advantage of the body’s membership benefits, including networking opportunities, informative events, dispute resolution cover, merchandise and more. Mark Wilson, Mobiletron Marketing Manager said: “We’re very keen to promote the independent automotive aftermarket and joining IAAF seemed like the natural next step. Being part of this membership supports the aftermarket as a whole as well as who we are and what we represent as a company. We very much relish the chance to become a proactive member, not just to ra
When it comes to basic vehicle maintenance, there is a large gap in confidence levels between ‘generation Z’ and ‘generation Y, according to new research. A study by vehicle insurance firm LV= found that millennials come out on top for their car maintenance skills, with 50% of 17-24 year olds saying they would find it easy to perform some basic car maintenance themselves. Unfortunately, confidence falls amongst older drivers, with 31% of those aged over 45 saying they would find it easy to repair a simple problem with their vehicle. These results stand in stark contrast to the widely held belief that older generations have a better knowledge of car maintenance compared to younger generations. Changes in the modern driving test curriculum and Google are having a significant imp
Colleagues, friends and associates are paying tribute to the life and career of one of the UK aftermarket’s most colourful characters, Alec Morgan, following his untimely death recently. In a career spanning some four decades, Alec will be best remembered for the invaluable and outstanding contribution he made to the industry, and for the enthusiasm he showed across the senior positions he occupied, most recently as Key Account Manager at Banner Batteries (GB) Limited. Indeed it was Alec’s association with the battery sector, and Banner in particular that he is most widely recognised for. Alec initially became involved with automotive batteries when he worked as Sales Director at his father’s business – Alan A.Morgan Ltd - that distributed brands such as LUK, Banner and SWF. Foll
This year, the London Motor Show moves to the ExCeL Centre in London's Docklands, promising a bigger and better experience than previous years - and you can be there with Auto Repair Focus! We have six pairs of tickets to the Friday running of the show - May 18th - up for grabs. All you need to do is sign up for the free Insight newsletter below, including your name, business name and email address, and we will pick six lucky winners from random. That's it, no strings attached, simply pop a few details into this form and you're in with a shout. The Insight is Auto Repair Focus' fortnightly newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox. It will bring you the latest news, features, videos and a link to our podcast - The Tune Up - where you can hear managing Editor Phil Curry and Adv...
The Autofirst Network has signed up its 300th member with Sussex-based Uckfield Motor Services joining the programme. The garage has signed up just six months after Autofirst reached 200 members and is already seeing a financial return from the scheme. Autofirst was set up by Euro Car Parts last year and offers members a package of national warranty programmes, marketing campaigns, access to a web-based management system and technical partnerships providing training and support. One additional benefit of joining Autofirst is access to the Euro Academy, an innovative information resource set up by Euro Car Parts. This includes a technical helpline, which has already helped the group’s latest signing to solve a potentially tricky throttle position sensor problem on a Volvo V50. Uck
Automechanika Birmingham is once again calling on independent garages across the UK to enter its ‘Garage of the Year’ award. The competition is open to all garages across the United Kingdom, with entrants explaining the reasons why they should win the award and walk away with £1,000. This year, there are six categories for garages to enter, recognising the diversity of UK businesses. The winner of each category will be announced at an evening dinner to be held at The Director’s Club, Aston Villa FC on 5 June, which all category finalists will be invited to attend free of charge. The overall Garage of the Year winner will then be announced at the show on 6 June from these six category winners. Last year’s first-ever ‘Garage of the Year’ award was won by local garage MotorServ-U