Non-profit” web site nets £1.3 million for Consumers” Association

25 March 2001 #SMMT News

SMMT today called for the Consumers’ Association to come clean

on the sale of its car import operation, Billed as a non-profit

operation for consumers, the business has just been sold to, generating

£1.3 million for the pressure group. But somewhat bizarrely the Consumers’ Association

described the sale as a ‘win win’ for consumers.

Commenting on the news SMMT chief executive Christopher Macgowan

said, ‘I am appalled to learn today that an organisation claiming to work for

the benefit of its members should be making over £1 million on a venture which

it described as ‘not for profit’ in February 2000. We call on the Consumers’

Association to end its Great British Rip-Off and give this bonus profit to the

Motor Industry Benevolent Fund (BEN), a genuine not-for-profit charity which

supports more than 13,000 less able people involved in the industry’.

The sale of comes soon after Autohit, the company

behind Car Price Check, revealed that some cars cost up to £5,000 less at a

UK dealer than they do in mainland Europe. Price comparisons also revealed that

many car firms now offer almost three-quarters of their range at lower prices

here than on the continent.

The research mirrors the fact that thousands of private buyers

have found the best deal on a new car is available from a UK dealer. Lower prices

and longer warranties have raised sales to the private sector by more than 22

per cent in the last six months.

* * * * *

Notes to Editors

  1. Demand from private buyers rose 17.2 per cent in March

    2001 and by more than 22 per cent in the last six months, accounting for sales

    of almost 100,000 additional vehicles.
  2. Motor industry charity BEN currently supports more than

    13,000 men, women and children in the motor, cycle agricultural engineering

    and allied industries.

Filter News

Update Newsletter