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UK vehicle enquiries stable in wake of Brexit, says Dealerweb

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Dealerweb, the cloud-based showroom management software provider, has said new and used car enquiries have remained stable in the the four weeks after referendum.

The business saw enquiries increase by 5% year-on-year from data collected from 220 UK dealers across volume, prestige and luxury sectors.

While enquiry levels have been strong, the Dealerweb says there has been a slight fall in sales conversion – the SMMT’s July registration figures highlight a marginal 0.1% uplift year-on-year, to 178,002 vehicles.

James Hill, sales operations director at Dealerweb, said: “For much of the period since the Brexit vote it has been business as usual for the automotive retail trade, despite fears in some quarters of a downturn in consumer confidence.

“The data suggests that while enquiries levels are strong, sales conversion ratios have suffered at the hands of Brexit, with consumers making initial enquiries, but perhaps delaying their purchase in the aftermath of the vote. It will be interesting to see if enquiry levels remain stable to the end of the year as the wider implications of the vote become clearer.”

AM's latest poll shows dealers are worried about sales dropping off in the second half of this year. The current results show the greatest impact of the Brexit decision will be felt in sales departments (53% of the vote).

The poll results as of August 8, 2016 shows that regulation follows sales at 21.2% or the vote and then business funding is the third area dealers believes will see the greatest impact with 14.2%. The results show dealers believe aftersales will remain robust, while F&I sales will also stay strong.

Hill said the Bank of England’s recent rate cut to 0.25% could be good news for car buyers.

He said: “There was some concern in the industry that the weakening pound would see Eurozone manufacturers’ finance companies – who trade in Euros – raise consumer interest rates to protect against higher Euro repatriation costs. The Bank of England’s decision to reduce rates could offset this, which is good news for car buyers.”

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