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NFDA applauds sales legislation changes in Queen’s Speech

The NFDA has highlighted the replacement of the Bills of Sale Acts with a new Goods Mortgage Act as the key issue to emerge from a Queen’s Speech. While outlined plans which might facilitate the further roll out of electric vehicles and lower car insurance premiums both featured in the document read out at the official re-opening of Parliament, NFDA director Sue Robinson said that changes to sales of goods legislation would “ensure more protection for both consumers and businesses”.

The National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA) and the National Association of Motor Auctions (NAMA) have been campaigning jointly to change current legislation on logbook loans.

AM Online

Green light for UK driverless car road trials

A demonstration of driverless cars in Nuneaton will be followed later this year by trials on public roads. Autodrive – a collaboration between Jaguar Land Rover, Ford and Tata Motors – showed off how autonomous cars can talk to each other. It included warning drivers when an emergency vehicle was approaching and offering real-time traffic information. The first set of public road trials are due to take place in Milton Keynes and Coventry by the end of the year.

Ford to move US production of Focus to China

Ford is to move US production of its new Ford Focus car to China in 2019, despite having faced pressure to keep manufacturing jobs in America. The carmaker said the decision would not lead to layoffs in the US. But the move marks another change to its plans for producing the new Focus. The firm in January scrapped plans to move US production to a new $1.6bn (£1.3bn) plant in Mexico after criticism from Donald Trump. Currently, Ford makes its Focus cars in Michigan, Germany and in China.

Carmakers call for transitional EU deal

The government must secure a transitional Brexit deal to protect the future of the UK car industry, a trade group has said. The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said Britain was highly unlikely to reach a final agreement with the EU by the March 2019 deadline. That meant carmakers could face a “cliff edge”, whereby tariff-free trade was sharply pulled away. It warned the industry would suffer without a back-up plan in place. The EU is by far the UK’s biggest automotive export market, buying more than half of its finished vehicles – four times as many as the next biggest market. UK car plants also depend heavily on the free movement of components to and from the continent.


Bank of England governor says it’s too early to raise interest rates

Mark Carney has outlined his opposition to a rise in interest rates as pressure for an increase builds at the Bank of England. The Bank’s governor told a City audience “now is not yet the time” to raise borrowing costs to combat Brexit-linked inflationary pressures. His main concern was the potential impact on business sentiment and consumers, as wage growth lags the pace of price increases – driven up by higher import costs since the collapse in sterling’s value after last year’s EU referendum.

Queen’s Speech introduces Electric Vehicles Bill

Motorway services and petrol stations may be forced to install electric charging points as part of Government plans to ensure the UK “remains a world leader in new industries”. An Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill will be introduced to encourage the use of electric and self-driving cars, the Government announced in the Queen’s Speech. The first all-electric car to be built in the UK rolled off of the production line in 2013, and the Government wants “almost every car and van to be zero-emission by 2050”. Of more than 36.7 million licensed vehicles in the UK, just over 100,000 have been purchased with help from a government plug-in car grant.

Sky News

More British parts being used in UK cars, says report

Growing supply chain could shield industry from any negative consequences of Brexit. The proportion of car components made in the UK and used in vehicles assembled in Britain has risen to 44%, according to a new report, highlighting success with efforts to rebuild a supply chain that could help to shield automotive factories from any negative consequences of Brexit. The percentage has increased steadily, from 36% in 2011 to 41% in 2015, and is now at an estimated 44% in 2017, said the report by the Automotive Council, a partnership involving the government and the private sector. This partly reflects £2bn of investment in the UK over the past three years, largely by vehicle component makers based overseas that have been responding to the British car industry’s renaissance, with output approaching record levels. However, the industry is heavily reliant on the EU for both exports of UK-made cars and components manufactured in continental Europe that are used in vehicles assembled in the UK.

Volvo takes on Tesla over high-performance electric cars

Volvo will take on Tesla in the high-performance electric car race after splitting out its Polestar division into a separate electrified car brand. The move signals a further expansion of the global ambitions of the Swedish carmaker’s Chinese owner Geely Automotive.  Polestar will use its close links with Volvo to “design, develop and build world-beating electrified high performance cars”, although it will have its own management team. The company promised a “portfolio” of vehicles, indicating it will launch models into different segments of the market rather than only focusing on high priced cars.

The Financial Times

Petrol cars will be priced off roads to fuel electric growth

Petrol and diesel cars will be priced off the busiest roads in Britain in eight years under plans to promote green vehicles, it was announced yesterday. All traditionally powered vehicles will face penalties of more than £24 a day to drive in central London from 2025 as part of proposals for a zero-emission zone. The plan, which was announced by Sadiq Khan, the mayor of London, escalates his war on polluting vehicles, which had focused on the worst diesels. Only electric cars will be exempt from the new charge. The rules, the toughest for any city in the world, would send a signal that London was moving towards a future free of fossil fuels, the mayor said.

Drivers in London face first pay-as-you-go road charge

Britain’s first pay-per-mile road charging system could be introduced under radical plans to cut the number of car journeys on the country’s busiest roads. A wide-ranging strategy to be outlined by the London mayor today will consider charging vehicles based on distance travelled in the capital, to push people on to public transport. The plan is also likely to include even higher charges for the most polluting vehicles to encourage a rapid shift towards zero-emission cars. It would be the first pay-as-you-go road pricing system in the UK and represents a significant step for transport policy. It could replace the existing £11.50 congestion charge, which is a single flat rate fee for entering central London irrespective of time spent or miles travelled.

The Times

London’s entire transport system to be zero emission by 2050, pledges Sadiq Khan

London’s entire transport system will become zero emission by 2050 under radical plans outlined by the mayor, Sadiq Khan. Included in the blueprint is a pledge to cut the number of car journeys by three million each day while increasing the number of people walking, cycling or using public transport to 80 per cent by 2041 – up from 64 per cent last year. London’s population is projected to rise to 10.5 million over the next 25 years and Mr Khan said a shift away from polluting vehicles was key to delivering a greener and healthier city.

The Independent


CBI predicts two years of subdued growth

The Confederation of British Industry has warned the UK economy will shift down a gear as Brexit talks get under way and households are squeezed by rising prices. However, the cautious outlook was accompanied by an increase in the CBI’s growth forecasts for this year and next, due to a stronger than expected performance in 2016 when the economy defied expectations to grow strongly in the wake of the vote.

The employers’ body is now forecasting the UK economy will expand by 1.6% this year and 1.4% in 2018, up from its predictions in November for 1.3% and 1.1%, respectively. That would still mark a slowdown from 1.8% growth in 2016.

The Guardian

Posted by Sue Robinson on 23/06/2017