SMMT response to What Car? dealer survey

29 November 2005 #SMMT News

In response to What Car?’s undercover survey on treatment of women in new car showrooms, Christopher Macgowan, SMMT chief executive, said:

‘Approaching a new car buyer differently on the basis of their sex is absolutely unacceptable. We know that women influence around 80 per cent of all car purchases so it simply isn’t in a dealer’s interest to treat such a huge customer base poorly.

‘Manufacturers carry out rigorous mystery shopper exercises to ensure dealer networks perform to expected customer service standards. However, the industry knows it must improve its reputation and the customer experience, whether it’s buying a new or used car or in servicing and repairs; that’s why the industry is united in developing a robust code of practice for garages giving customers peace of mind when they need their vehicle repairing.’

SMMT offers the following advice to all car buyers:

  • Do your research – the internet is a no-pressure environment where you can identify your needs, consider options and compare prices, all before you leave home.
  • Be confident – know what vehicle you want and what price you want to pay.
  • Be prepared to walk away if you aren’t entirely happy with a deal, or the service you receive.

Christopher Macgowan added, ‘Buying a new car isprobably the second biggest purchase you’ll make. If you don’t feel comfortable with a deal or are treated poorly, then shop around.’

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