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Van man can be a snob too

Van man has been accused of snobbery when it comes to the new plate change system, threatening the resale value of LCVs from regions with a bad reputation for care and maintainance.

From September, plates will indicate the place of registration as well as the vehicle's age. Now Cap Motor Research is warning that regional prejudice among van buyers could reduce secondhand values for vehicles registered in some parts of the country.

It means LDVs from Liverpool or Sprinters in Spalding, Lincs, could be worth less than identical vehicles registered elsewhere.

This phenomenon will not impact on unconcerned 'Mondeo man' or the average biker, says Cap.

"We know already that dealers will give a little more when they know the origin of the vehicle," said David Hill, senior editor of Cap Red Book.

"But the new system will create winners and losers - with dealers and owners from some areas benefiting as buyers pay a little extra for a favoured region's registration number. But by the same token, some vans may be worth less thanks to the same regional effect because vehicles from some areas are notorious for being in a worse condition than others."

He said the explicit display of a regional identifier gives traders the ideal opportunity to lower their bids. "Buyers in some areas may even consider registering vehicles elsewhere to maximise their resale value," Mr Hill said.

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