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fixautoBodyshop franchise Fix Auto forms alliance with Industry Insights

Fix Auto UK has announced a strategic alliance with consultancy business Industry Insights to further develop its product offering to the UK motor market.

Formed in 2015, Industry Insights combines over 40 years’ collective experience in both the vehicle repair and motor insurance sectors. The consultancy is led by Steve Thompson, previously managing director of Nationwide Network Services and group sales director of Nationwide Accident Repair Services, the UK’s largest bodyshop chain, along with co-director Sharon McLeod who has operated in procurement roles for leading motor insurance companies.

Ian Pugh of Fix Auto UK, said: “Creating a strategic alliance with Industry Insights is a significant development for our business.

“Steve has a strong pedigree in our market and boasts a strong track record in developing innovative insurance relationships while Sharon is extremely accomplished within the procurement arena. Together they make the perfect partnership and I am confident that they will deliver significant value to Fix Auto.

Thompson said: “I have witnessed first-hand how Fix Auto UK has developed and grown over the past five years into a key player within the repair sector.

“It was important to Industry Insights that we chose our repair network partner wisely and I am personally very confident that we have made the right decision”.

“Industry Insights has a solution for delivery of key objectives. We have a huge amount of experience encompassing sales, marketing, claims operations, tenders, procurement, recruitment and innovation and I firmly believe we will help Ian and his team meet their ambitions and goals.”


vwUS justice department begins legal proceedings against Volkswagen Group

A lawsuit has been filed against Volkswagen Group by the US Justice Department in relation to the emissions scandal of recent months.

The lawsuit, on behalf of the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), was filed on Monday in a federal court in Detroit, Michigan.

The EPA claims discussions with Volkswagen Group in the US have not created “an acceptable way forward”.

“With today’s filing, we take an important step to protect public health by seeking to hold Volkswagen accountable for any unlawful air pollution, setting us on a path to resolution,” said assistant administrator Cynthia Giles for the EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance.

“So far, recall discussions with the company have not produced an acceptable way forward. These discussions will continue in parallel with the federal court action.”

The department said the filing was just the first step in “bringing Volkswagen to justice”.

The carmaker is also facing separate criminal charges, and a raft of class-action lawsuits filed by VW owners.

“The complaint alleges that nearly 600,000 diesel engine vehicles had illegal defeat devices installed that impair their emission control systems and cause emissions to exceed EPA’s standards, resulting in harmful air pollution,” the court filing said.

It also alleges that VW “violated” clean air laws by selling cars that were different in design from those originally cleared for sale by the EPA.


 SkodaAutoSkoda UK appoints new brand director

Duncan Movassaghi has been appointed as the new director of Skoda UK, replacing Alasdair Stewart who leaves to take up an as yet unspecified senior assignment within Volkswagen Group UK.

Movassaghi was previously the head of service and parts operations for Volkswagen Passenger Cars, a position he has held since April 2014.

Since joining the Volkswagen Group in 2010, Movassaghi has also been head of sales operations for Skoda UK, leading the brand’s sales through a period of record growth.

Before that, he fulfilled a number of senior management roles within the pharmaceutical and banking sectors.

Movassaghi said: “I’m excited to be returning to Skoda. The development of the brand over the past few years has been extremely impressive, and with the recent launches of the new Fabia and Superb, Skoda has a strong and enviable model line-up. I am looking forward to working with the UK team and all of our dealer partners to continue the momentum.”

Volkswagen group UK managing director, Paul Willis, said: “Duncan brings a wealth of experience and business knowledge that will be invaluable in helping Skoda achieve its ambitious growth plans.

“I would like to thank Alasdair for leading Škoda over the past four years, overseeing a period of significant growth in the brand.”


dvsaDVSA upgrades Zafira fire fix to official safety recall

he fix to prevent fires on some Vauxhall Zafira B cars has been officially reclassified from a ‘voluntary recall’ to a ‘safety recall’ by the DVSA.

The agency said that the cause of a small number of fires is due to the “improper repair of the thermal fuse of the resistor in the heating and ventilation system, undertaken outside of Vauxhall’s authorised service and maintenance processes and schedule”.

Paul Satoor, DVSA’s Chief Executive, said: “We are working closely with Vauxhall to ensure that owners are contacted swiftly and replacement parts fitted as soon as possible.

“We will continue to monitor progress with the recall and keep this issue under review.”

Vauxhall has so far fixed 45,000 vehicles and plans to have all affected cars fixed within the next few weeks.

Rory Harvey, Chairman of Vauxhall Motors said: “We recognise that owners may have vehicles which have been improperly repaired without their knowledge or before they bought the vehicle.

“Safety is our priority and we have been working tirelessly in the past weeks to find the root cause and contact owners to explain the situation and our actions.

“The DVSA’s acknowledgement of the root cause is an important milestone but the important thing now is to ensure that all Zafira B owners bring their vehicles in for inspection and rework.”


VWScandal1VW Brand Chief Says Diesels Will Stay in U.S. Lineup

Diess confident of finding solution to regulatory crisis

Volkswagen’s brand chief isn’t giving up on diesels in the U.S. market despite the company’s emissions scandal that has undermined the eco-friendly credentials of the niche powertrain. Herbert Diess says that diesels will continue to have a role in Volkswagen’s U.S. lineup because, with the latest emissions technologies, diesels can be clean. He also touted the long range and high torque of diesel engines. “I wouldn’t give up diesel, even in the U.S.,” Diess told reporters on the sidelines of VW’s CES keynote [in Las Vegas] Tuesday night. VW is scrambling to receive U.S. regulatory approval for fixes to nearly 500,000 diesels fitted with illegal emissions software designed to manipulate nitrogen oxide emissions measurements on government tests.

Source: Automotive News

Posted by Sue Robinson on 08/01/2016