Does Your Smartphone Decide Your Car?

General News
Smartphones

Let’s be honest your car’s dashboard is old and dumb.

Just imagine being back in the pre-smartphone revolution, the days when you dropped your phone and it didn’t crack and still worked. You have  just heard about the iPhone and you are amazed but don’t see why you would ever possibly need all those features. When you finally purchase a smartphone you don’t understand how anyone has EVER lived without one. That is exactly the point in time where we are now.

[Tweet “We are staring down the barrel of a technological revolution in the centre console of every car.”]

We have already seen a shift in how cars are made and even what technology goes into cars from car maker, Tesla. The new Tesla cars’ are fully electric but the dashboard is the revolution that you will recognise the most. The centre console is a touch screen display that combines internet access as well as the standard car buttons (such as air conditioning).

Technological Limitations

The usual phone contract in Australia is about 24 months, in this time the phone you bought would have been superseded by at least 2 models and you are way behind the times. The day you buy your brand new car with all its technology it is already of date, due to the fact is that it takes about 5 years to get from concept to production.

There are really two options:

Option 1 is that you trade in your car every single year so that you can get the latest model and technology (will still be out of date)

Option 2 is where the software runs off the power of your phone. At the end of the day I am sure that nearly everyone in the world would choose to just upgrade their phone and that is why the operating systems are run simply by plugging in your phone.

Option 2 is probably the option you will be going with, unless you are planning to spend your life’s savings on cars.

The dashboard revolution is happening because of the number of deaths on the roads due to texting and drivers being distracted.

TRIVIAL text messages sent or read by drivers at the wheel have claimed the lives of at least 20 people on the nation’s roads and left many more injured.”- News Limited investigation in 2013

The technology aims to solve the problem of people texting while driving, by having minimal-on screen text and maximum voice control to ensure that you are not tempted to focus on the screen.

At this point in time there are three operating systems (apart from tesla and a few others) that are coming to fruition in the near future.

Google's Android Auto
Android Auto

Google’s new Android Auto was introduced on the 25th of June at their annual I/O Conference. The software brings the voice-activated commands and simple design of Android phones to your car.

Android Auto in the simplest form is a bigger smartphone that is stuck in the middle of your car.

Simply plug your phone into the car via USB then the in-dash screen takes control over your smartphone. A voice-activation button on your car steering wheel (on new cars) will allow you to ask Google for directions or to select a song or radio station.

Apple CarPlay
Apple CarPlay

Android Auto is extremely similar to Apple’s CarPlay.

It is similar in the way that both have steering wheel voice activation buttons (Apple with Siri and Android with Google Now) and apps as the home screen interface. Again, the software is very similar to its iPhone, and requires a user to plug their phone into the car.

At the moment it seems that the Android Auto system has a leg up on the CarPlay system as the Android system has contextual awareness. The Android system can, for instance, offer a less-congested route when you are driving to work, where Apple’s CarPlay does not have this functionality yet.

It is important to note that Apple announced it’s in car system back in March and just recently Google and Microsoft have announced their in-car systems.

One limitation of Apple’s CarPlay is that it requires a iPhone 5 or newer to be compatible with. In other words, if you are thinking about getting the CarPlay you may also have to upgrade to a new phone.

To see Apple CarPlay in action click here.

Microsoft

Microsoft’s in-car system is exactly the same as Google’s Android Auto and Apple’s CarPlay just with a Microsoft looking interface. There is one difference that may actually see Microsoft win the in-car dashboard market. It doesn’t make any difference what OS you are running on your phone it will work with your in-car system.

This means that if down the track you decide to switch from Apple to Android then you won’t have to get your car changed as well; this could be a driving factor in your phone choice (which is probably what these companies want).

Smartphone = Car Choice?

The big question is does your smartphone mean you have to pick a certain car?

The answer is yes and no.

At the time of writing this article there are a few automakers who have only signed with one tech company but, it is not going to stay that way.

The idea of eliminating a percentage of the market because of your smartphone choice would go against the basic principles of selling. For example, Apple have a “15.3% market share” and Samsung with a “31.2% market share”, if a company didn’t allow consumers to choose dashboard operating systems then they would be missing out on 15.3% and 31.2% respectively of the market.

We have already seen the announcement from a number of automakers that they will be compatible with CarPlay and Android Auto. Pioneer is also selling aftermarket systems running on the Apple CarPlay operating system, at the end of this year.

Would you buy a specific car because of your smartphone? Which operating system would you want to use in your car?

What Is The Cheapest Car To Own?

General News

The RACT (Royal Automobile Club of Tasmania) recently released their annual report on which car is the cheapest to own. The overall winner was the Suzuki Alto, which was not surprising considering the size of the car.

“In six cases, petrol is cheaper to own, while six of the diesels cost less. In some instances, the difference is $80+ a week; in one, it’s just 10c. Generally, petrol suits passenger sedans but diesel works for a large SUV.” Said an RACV spokesperson

The real question that comes from the report is: If you are getting the most efficient car on the market, why not get the most efficient car that saves you on tax as well?

We decided that we would take the figures in the RACT report and see if we could save you money on the ‘cheapest to run vehicle’ in each vehicle class.  We used a novated lease as our car financing option, as it would give you the best savings at the end of the day. If you would like to learn more about what a novated lease is watch the video below.

For all our calculations we will be using Bob, he is an average man earning $55,000 a year. Some of his car considerations in this article may be a bit iffy for some people; but he likes all cars no matter what the size and just wants to see his savings.

Cheapest Vehicle To Run

Bob is looking at the cheapest car to run the Suzuki Alto with an annual total cost of $5,545.56, which he is getting very limited tax savings off.  Under a novated lease, he would get an increase of $1,852 in take home pay every year, for driving exactly the same car. This is done by taking out all the running costs from his pre-tax salary and then being taxed on his salary minus the running costs.

Suzuki Alto
Light Vehicle

In the Light vehicle category the Suzuki Swift was the cheapest was a Suzuki Swift, with an annual cost of $6,120. Under a Car Finance Shop novated lease Bob would save $2,034.75 a year.

Small Vehicle

In the Small Vehicle class, the Holden Cruze was the front runner with an annual cost of $7,808.28. Under a novated lease Bob would save $2,433.19.

Holden Cruze
Medium Size Vehicle

In the Medium Vehicle class the Volkswagen Jetta topped the lot with an annual cost of $9,311.45. It was cheaper than Australia’s most popular car for May 2014 the Toyota Corolla. Under a novated lease the Volkswagen Jetta would pocket Bob an extra $2,998.61.

Large Vehicles

In the Large Vehicles class the Holden Commodore Evoke VF was the best bang for Bob’s buck with an annual cost of $11,848.01. While under a Novated lease Bob could be saving $3,115.73.

Holden Commodore Evoke VF
Medium SUV
Mitsubishi Outlander

In the Medium SUV class, if Bob purchased a Mitsubishi Outlander he would have running costs of $10,262.42. Bob decided to go with a novated lease with the Car Finance Shop so he got to take home an extra $3,855.45 a year.

The average savings from these six models using a novated lease was $2,887.55.  Bob could go overseas every year from the savings he got with a novated lease, every single year of owning his car. Bob is quite the happy chappy and you could be too.

If you would like more information please do not hesitate to call us on 1300 309 343.

All figures used for calculation purposes in this article are based off the RACT figures in the 2014 Vehicle Operating Costs report: using 12,000 km/year as the basis for calculation, car price and residual as given, over a 5 year Novated Lease. The only estimate in the calculation was the income which we set at a standard annual income of $55,000.

11 Ways Self-Driving Cars Will Change Your Life

General News
What are Self-Driving Cars?

No matter the term, whether it is a ‘self-driving’, driverless, highly autonomous or autonomous vehicle, the result is the control element shifting from humans to computers. The future of this technology brings with it many advantages but some disadvantages that could see the shaping of automotive freedom for society in the future.

Audi Stop-Start Technology

Audi for example have been trying to create an autonomous vehicle for a number of years. Some of the technology it has developed they have used in their current models or are planned for their upcoming models.

Audi have created a system that links with traffic lights so that the car will speed up or slowly brake to optimise petrol usage by either slowing down or speeding up for the lights.  It also has a stop-start system that will start the engine five seconds before the lights turn green. The aim of all this technology is to save petrol, by removing the jerky breaking that driver’s usual do when they come to the lights.

The prototype that Google showed off on May 28th far exceeded the building blocks that Audi have in store for its upcoming models. It is aiming for a fully autonomous vehicle that will require no human control, except for entering a destination.   The current prototype has no steering wheel and no pedals, which for some sounds scary, but for others sounds amazing.

After Google showed off its prototype on May 28th, Uber CEO  Travis Kalanick posted the following to Twitter

 and in the same day said the following:

Self-driving cars are the future for the automotive industry and could transform many other industries in the process. But how will these autonomous cars advantage your life?

7 Advantages of Self-driving Cars
Traffic congestion

Here are some of the possible benefits of autonomous vehicles:

1. Self-driving cars WILL save lives: This is the most obvious of applications and is the clear reason why the technology is required. According to an expert for The Age, the autonomous cars could “slash the road toll by 80 per cent”. Furthering on from the statement that “Experts know human error is to blame for about 95 per cent of collisions on the roads.”

2. Autonomous cars will be more fuel efficient: with the price of fuel ever increasing the wastage occurring due to human error will be eliminated error, thereby maximising fuel.  Also cars will be smaller and lighter as less safety features will be required.

3. Commutes will be faster and less stressful: The worst part of many Australians is the commute to and from work. With the assistance of self-driving cars the commute will be shorter as cars will be able to drive at a steadier speed. Also you can have a nap on the way to and from work.

4. More people will be able to drive: with constant talks about “should or shouldn’t elderly individuals be able to drive”, the autonomous vehicle will completely remove this barrier and allow nearly everyone to ‘drive’. The notion of L platers and P platers will be gone and the minimum age could be set by government.

5. Improving the sharing generation: with many experts identifying the younger generations as the sharing generation the driverless car could offer them a unique sharing experience.  It is estimated that privately owner cars are parked 90 per cent of their life, this means cars could be shared when the car isn’t in use for one individual.

6. Make bike riding and walking safer:  with the bicycle road toll doubling from 2012 to 2013, to 14 deaths, the autonomous vehicles will make the roads a safer place for all users.

Self-driving cars will cut the road toll by 80 per cent

7. The rise of electronic vehicles: the adoption of autonomous vehicles could drastically improve the likelihood of the adoption of fully electric cars. With the autonomous vehicles creating more light weight vehicles, this could increase the travel distance of a single battery, resulting in a decrease in fuel consumption.

4 Disadvantages of Self-driving Cars

There are number concerns/disadvantages of autonomous cars:

  1. Loss of jobs: The biggest concern of self-driving cars is the negative effects on numerous industries. The self-driving car will lower the demand in industries such as public transport and private transport (such as Taxis). Companies such as Uber have already suggested that it could potentially flip its business on its head by eliminating the need for ‘freelance’ drivers. The switch would see autonomous vehicles take the place of drivers and really only require maintenance and technological crew for behind the scenes. It would nearly eliminate the workforce and put hundreds of thousands of people out of jobs.
  2. Legal changes: with the introduction of a new form of technology, government will have to set new laws to do with privacy and safety features for all vehicles. Some governments are already stating that autonomous vehicles must be able to have the ability to be human controlled.
  3. Privacy infringements:   With the car being controlled by GPS navigation, does this lessen user’s privacy. Will companies be able to track people’s locations? How much of the data will be stored? How much of it will be shared?
  4. Self-learning computer uprising: The other concern is a bit of a novelty concern, but many people believe that it could actually occur. For most Sci-Fi nerds the fear of Skynet (from Terminator) is ever present whenever control is passed from human to machine.  Skynet is based on the premise that computers began to teach itself and blocked out human control as it humans were deemed inefficient. This argument will continuously be brought up in the future as more mundane jobs and chores are completed by autonomous robots and computer systems.

Can you think of any other ways self-driving cars will change your life?

What Is Google’s Self Driving Car?

General News
Google's Self Driving Car Prototype

Google is fighting to be a part of the first autonomous mass produced vehicles in the world.

On May 28, 2014 Google announced a prototype self-driving car that does not have a steering wheel or pedals. This prototype in particular, was unusual for Google as in previous models of autonomous vehicles they have just used mass produced cars as the basis and added features to make it autonomous.

Google is unlikely to join the production side of the motor vehicle industry, despite this current prototype, but should be a strong presence in the behind the scenes technology side of cars. With Google’s clear aim to license the software and technology to leading auto makers such as Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, etc.

The self-driving prototype car that Google showed off, works by generating a detailed 3D map of its environment with a combination of high-resolution maps of the world and different data models to autonomously drive itself. It does this through the tandem technologies of LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) scanner on the car roof, and radar and ultrasonic scanners.

Below is a video published by Google about people’s experiences of their prototype self-driving car.

The Debt Levy Loophole

General News

According to tax experts, people earning over $180,000 will have nine months to salary-package to avoid the debt levy, and take advantage of the loop hole.

Treasurer Joe Hockey, last week announced the 2 per cent tax on taxable income over $180,000 starting in July (next financial year), taking the top marginal tax rate to 49 percent.

A loophole has risen from a leeway given by the Coalition in the budget last week. The fringe benefit tax is to stay at 47 percent till April 2015, presenting a nine-month opportunity that tax advisors are jumping on.

“Salary packaging may come back into vogue.”

An individual who is earning $200,000 could package the $20,000 cost of a new car lease, including running costs (for example, petrol, repairs, registration/CTP), to reduce their income to $180,000. The individual is now below the $180,000 threshold and the debt levy will not apply.

Those who can salary-package can achieve better tax outcomes than others when tax rates change.

Michael Crokers, head of tax policy at the Institute of Chartered Accountants

CPA Australia’s head of policy, Paul Drum said “The government’s planned three-year debt levy is in fact a two-year debt levy for some who avail themselves of smart tax planning.” Tony Greco a senior tax advisor at the Institute of Public Accountants said that the “taxpayers with incomes over $180,000 generally have access to good advisors”. In other words, the income earners over $180,000 will be taking advantage of this and other “loopholes”.

Leave us a comment below about your thoughts on the debt levy? Will you be taking advantage of it?

Read more about the 2014 Budget here

Get a quote today or give us a call on 1300 309 343 to avoid the debt levy.

Cut-throat 2014 Budget

General News
2014 Budget Highlights: Education • Universities can set their own tuition fees from 2016 • New Trade Support Loans of up to $20,000 for apprentices Family • From July 2015, Family Tax Benefit Part B to stop when child turns six; drop in income of $100,000 • A family receiving Part A will see payments drop when income reaches $94,316 per year Medical • $7 charge to see the doctor, have a blood test or an X-ray • $20 billion Medical Research Fund to be paid for through the $7 co-payments for doctor visits • $2 billion cut from public hospitals Infrastructure • $50 billion Our Growth Package to fund new infrastructure , including major road projects • $3 billion for stages one and two of the East West Link Fuel • Fuel tax increase of one cent a litre, with proceeds tied to road-building projects Defence • $122.7 billion over four years on defence spending (up $9.6 billion) • 58 new F-35 Joint Strike Fighters ordered at cost of $12.4 billion

The 2014 Budget was released last night, and the resounding opinion on it is not exactly positive. Treasurer Joe Hockey declared that “the age of entitlement is over”, as he announced the harshest budget in over a decade.

The budget hurts families, the sick, the wealthy and the young unemployed. Mr Hockey is doing this by: slashing welfare, introducing a temporary debt ‘tax’, raising the petrol tax, raising the pension eligibility age, and gutting the schools and hospitals by taking away over $80 billion of funding over the next 10 years.

The Abbott Government said the drastic budget would cut the nation’s net debt from a forecasted peak of $264 billion in 2017-18 to around $1-$2 billion within the next decade.

 

The Big Winners

This budget was not exactly a winning budget for many people, as it clamped down on the majority of the population.

The real winners are the motorists and businesses.

The motorists were big winners with over $50 billion in funding for infrastructure, which is to be known as the “Our Growth Package”. Victorians will be able to experience this win through the $3billion for the East West Link; $263.4 million for Western Highway Ballarat to Stawell duplication.

Business can probably be seen as the biggest winner of the budget, with a number of key wins.

Starting with small businesses, which a Small Business Ombudsman is going to be created to help small businesses find out about government programs. The other key advantage for small businesses is that protection from unfair contracts will be extended to small business to help create a level playing field with bug business.

The Minor Winners

The minor winners are the individuals in the regional/rural areas of Australia with $100 million allotted to communication and $100 million to agriculture.

$100 million has been allotted to fix mobile phone black spots in rural and regional areas. This may mean that the tower works, but if your provider will actually take advantage of the increased network area is another question.

Also another $100 million to assist in research into the agriculture industry to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of all aspects associated with the industry.

The Big Losers

The budget is full of big losers, ranging from low income earners to the young unemployed.

Starting off with the health industry, a $7 charge will be introduced to visit the GP, have a blood test or an X-ray. The increase is meant to be funding the new $20 billion Medical Research Future Fund, which is a positive but the effect of the $7 charge mixed with the effects on low income earners, will ultimately lead to increase hardship for the low income earners of Australia.  Another lose in the health industry is the $2 billion cut from public hospitals, mixed with a $390 million cut to public dental. If this wasn’t already a big lose, a $5 charge for prescriptions (specific drugs which have not be named yet) and an extra 80 cents for pensioners surely take it over the line.

The education sector is the next biggest loser with a shredder taken to the budgets and affordability of education. Universities can set their own tuition fees from 2016, and students will have to pay back HELP debt sooner with the income threshold dropped to $50,368. With universities charging whatever they see fit for a degree, we could be seeing the cost of a degree rising to $200,000 in 2016.

The low income earners are probably the hardest hit in the budget, with both Part A and B of the Family Tax benefit being lessened. Part B will stop when a child turns six and the threshold being lessened to $100,000. Part A will see payments drop when income reaches $94,316 a year. This could end up losing low income earners over $4000 a year, this mixed with the rising costs in education, fuel and medical help will hurt every low income earner.

The Good with the Bad

Businesses will also get $10,000 payment for employing employees over the age of 50. However, from September 2017 the age of the pension is expected to rise to 70 and pensions will be indexed to CPI not wages. In other words, pension raises will only compensate for inflation and won’t keep inflation; obviously, the ten thousand dollar grant is meant to assist the over 50s to get jobs and stay within the work force so they can combat the loss.

The petrol tax will increase by one cent a litre; however the proceeds are tied to road-building. You may never see the direct benefit of the increase but someone out there in Australia will be driving on your contribution of one cent a litre to their roads.

 

Overall, the budget seems to complete its objective of lowering the nation’s tax debt; but at what cost?

What are your thoughts on the 2014 budget?

How will the National Debt Tax affect you?

General News
Source: theshovel.com.au

Source: theshovel.com.au

News Corp reported that the national debt tax (also known as the deficit tax) is a strategic move by the Abbott Government to ensure that the deficit can be taken under control. It is rumoured to operate exactly like the Medicare Levy, it is believed that users earning over $80,000 a year will be slogged with a 1% tax, and individuals earning over $180,000 a year with a 2% tax. 

Individuals earning $80,000 a year will pay $800 a year extra, and individuals earning over $400,000 will be paying an extra $8000 a year.

On Monday opposition leader Bill Shorten accused Tony Abbott on reneging on elections promises. He continued to say, that they have doubled the deficit since taking office and now they “want all Australians to pay the deficit tax”.

The Australian Financial Review reported that many high profile business and industry leaders are urging against this tax. Agreeing with those comments was the head of the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chief operating officer John Osborn. He was quoted on saying on ABC radio “The government promised no surprises and new taxes and a debt levy would be an unwelcome surprise.”

Treasurer Joe Hockey is due to release the Commission of Audit report on Thursday, it is expected that the report will reveal measures to restrict the deficit rising to the expected $30 billion figure by 2017-2018 year.

In a speech to the Sydney Institute on Monday night, Abbott said that there wouldn’t be many people “without a grumble” when the government hands down the budget on May 13. The speech also signalled a number of interesting reforms and changes (or lack thereof):

  • Families on $100,000 and more to see tax alterations
  • Welfare payments to undergo indexing and eligibility threshold adjustments
  • Income tax cuts likely in four or five years’ time
  • ‘‘Biggest-ever’’ national roads program (potentially including the East West Link)
  • Scrapping of the school kids bonus, income support bonus
  • No cuts to age pension or hike in access age before 2017

What are your thoughts on the “deficit tax”? Let us know in the comment section below.

2014 Beijing Motor Show Top Cars

General News

The 2014 Beijing Motor Show was a big hit with all the automotive companies showing off their cars for the Asian market. We decided to cover just a few of the cars as these stood out to us for some reason or another.

Hyundai ix25

Hyundai introduced this all new crossover concept at the Motor Show, showing off the brand new ix25, a near-production concept that brings the new CUV to the Asian region.

The ix25 will serve as an entry level car for the Hyundai’s Chinese CUV range, and may reach the American shores after the popularity of the B-segment CUV in the US market continues to sore thanks to the popularised Buick Encore.

The ix25 is designed using the new “Fluid Sculpture 2.0” system that Hyundai have implemented. Under the hood sits a 2.0 litre four “Nu” four-cylinder engine. The ix25 is roughly 4.27 meters long, which is nearly 26cms shorter than a Ford Escape.

We think this car could make big waves in the automotive industry, growing the popular B-segment CUV and forcing its competitors to join this market.

Bugatti Veyron Legend Edition Black Bess

The Bugatti Veyron Legend Edition isn’t exactly subtle. Bugatti have introduced four special editions of its already famous Bugatti Veyron, which have all sold out already and with this fifth special edition we don’t think that they will have an issue of selling out of them.

This Legend edition is inspired by a car instead of a person like the other cars. Black Bess was the name of a Bugatti Type 18 from 1912 to 1914, where the Type 18 was the super car at the time.

The Black Bess Legend Edition will be limited to only three cars and each one will cost about €2.15 million (AUD$3.17 million).

We don’t think that you will be able to car finance this option with us, but we can always try

BMW Future Vision Luxury Concept 

The BMW Future Vision really doesn’t need a whole paragraph to describe it.

The BMW Future Vision is the car of the future, at least we are hoping. It looks amazing and the features inside the car complement its beautifully sculptured exterior.

Hopefully one day soon we will see this on our roads, as this was our favorite from the 2014 Beijing Motor Show

What was your favorite from the 2014 Beijing Motor Show? Let us know in the comment section below or on our Facebook page

The Effects of the Australia Japan Free Trade Agreement on the Automotive Industry

General News
Source: SBS

Source: SBS

Following six months of negotiations the Abbott Government have sealed the deal of one of the biggest trading coups in Australia’s history.

What does the deal mean to Australia?

Trade Minister Andrew Robb confirmed the deal officially known as the Japan-Australia Economic Partnership Agreement on Monday afternoon in Tokyo. The deal is expected to be phased-in over the coming 15 years.

For Australia this means that it will free up exports of Australian dairy, beef, wine, sugar, horticulture, and a range of services. Meanwhile making Japanese cars, cameras, televisions and other high-tech goods cheaper in Australia.

How does it affect the automotive industry?

The latest tariff break means that an average $30,000 car (such as the Mazda3) should drop by about $1,500 according to the Abbott government.

After three years, three-quarters of Japanese cars will have the existing 5% tariff removed. The tariff was originally introduced to protect the Australian automotive industry, but considering the recent departure of Holden and numerous Australian automotive companies becoming insolvent it is no surprise that this deal was established to protect Australians in the long run.

Who loses from the agreement?

The big loses of the agreement are the Australian Government and the Australian automotive components makers.

The removal of the 5% tariff means that the Abbott government will lose billions in the future, it has been estimated to total around $400 million a year. This could potentially translate to revenue raising in another sector to offset the lose.

Additionally, the Australian automotive components makers will lose the protection of tariffs applied to Japanese competitors. This protection is expected to be phased-out over five-years to ensure that they can become globally competitive and latch onto the global supply chain.

Will there be any trade diversion effects?

Trade diversion is the amount of trade that wont take place because of a free trade agreement.

“With Japanese cars becoming cheaper that means we will import fewer cars from somewhere else. That means another country will miss out on potential exports to Australia. What will that mean for trade relations with other countries?” Dr Mark Melatos, a senior lecturer in trade economics at Sydney University

Will Australians actually see the price reduction?

Mazda came out and said that possible fluctuations in the Australian dollar and added specifications to vehicles may counteract the savings experienced by the tariff reduction. Hopefully Australians to get to see the savings from the removal of the tariffs; but if the comments made by Mazda are any indication then the savings may not actually be passed on.

Weekly round up

General News

In the inaugural weekly round up we will be focusing on a Nissans new dealership model, VW’s entry level car, and the advancement in Diesel engines.

Nissan

Nissan Dealership

Nissan Dealership

Nissan are currently testing a new layout in their London store and are planning to test it out in more countries starting with countries in Western Europe. The layout abolishes the standard dealership model of desks and walls and offers a ‘transparent’ process. The sales team will constantly be on their feet, every customer that walks in the door is their direct responsibility, even if they are going to the service centre it is their job to walk them over there and introduce the service centre team to the customer.

The aim of the new layout is improve customer satisfaction, gone are the days where you have to go into the dark back office to finalise a deal. The aim is to be able to complete the transaction via some form of electronic tablet. This is a drastic change to what we have seen in the past, with Nissan moving to a more luxury good model. This new model has many similarities to selling luxury goods, as it has a very strong customer satisfaction importance, among many others.

VW

The Volkswagen Group’s plan to be the largest automaker in the world by 2018 is shaping up with a brand new entry level vehicle. The vehicle is meant to be like the Tata Nano, the extremely basic car that was meant to explode the Indian market but never really got the sales growth that was expected. The car got rid of many creature comforts that we are used to in a car, as you can see in the picture below the car is pretty bare and it is the deluxe version.

Inside the Tata Nano (Dashboard)

Inside the Tata Nano (Dashboard)

The Volkswagen Group’s version of the Tata Nano vehicle will cost approximately 6,000 to 8,000 Euros (approximately $9,000-$12,000 AUD). The aim of the car is to penetrate the low cost market, in particular the Asia market. The Volkswagen Group has a strong presence in the China market, however has very little presence anywhere else across Asia. The aim of the new car is to expand into these Asian countries and achieve their goal of being the worlds largest automaker by 2018.

Advancements in Diesel engines 

BlueTec badge

BlueTec badge

The diesel engine has been advancing in leap and bounds over the past decades. According to a recent study by UK’s Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, diesel engines produce 21 percent fewer pollutants compared to diesel engines in 2003. Additionally, diesel engines fuel efficiency has improved by 27 percent compared to ten years ago. It now produces 128.3 grams of carbon dioxide per kilometre, which is nearly down 30% since 2000, according to SMMT.

You can see exactly why marketers have been trying to come up with new and inventive ways to say “greener diesel engines”, we have seen terms such as TDI Clean Diesel, Eco Diesel and BlueTec.

“Motorists today benefit from much cleaner diesel cars than those that were on the market even ten years ago,” Peter Fouquet, President of Bosch UK told HybridCars.com