Motor Industry Update 18 November 2020

Ford E-Transit All-new Ford E-Transit - Photo credit: Ford

All-Electric Ford E-Transit powers the future of business

Ford has introduced a new smart workhorse, namely the E-Transit van, offering customers improved productivity thanks to its fully electric powertrain, software solutions, services and Pro Power Onboard options.

Jim Farley, Ford’s president and CEO, said:

“Ford is North America and Europe’s commercial vehicle leader, so the transition of fleet vehicles to zero emissions, especially for the fast-growing last-mile delivery segment, is critical to achieve our carbon neutral goal by 2050. Ford is ready to lead the charge that started with its award-winning Transit Custom Plug-In Hybrid and EcoBlue Hybrid. It’s good for the planet and a huge advantage for customers with lower operating costs and new connected technologies that will help their businesses.”

With over 1,800 global Commercial Vehicle dealers and 1,000-strong European network of Transit Centres, customers will be able to get support from Ford whenever they need it.

The advantage Ford has over other newcomers in the van business, who are still building prototypes, is that their commercial vehicle ecosystem is expanding to include electric vehicle monitoring software and connected solutions for fleets to seamlessly integrate into day-to-day operations.

Farley continued:

“We are doubling down on the software and digital services to help our fleet customers grow and more efficiently run their businesses.”

Mercedes-Benz Online Showroom

Image courtesy of Mercedes-Benz

Home delivery and ‘Click and Collect’ available via Mercedes-Benz Online Showroom

With car showrooms forced to close in the UK’s second lockdown, manufacturers are resorting to online showrooms in order to stay open.

If you are a Mercedes-Benz customer, you can now find, purchase and even take delivery of a new or approved used Mercedes-Benz without having to leave the comfort of your home.

Prospective customers can view every available new and approved used car from any Mercedes-Benz Retailer in the country via their website The live locator allows you to narrow down your selection by location, as well as give you a personalised finance quote that includes the Retailer’s offer on any specific car.

You can also request a home test drive using the Online Showroom. The Retailer will then get in touch with you to arrange a suitable time to deliver a demonstrator vehicle for you to drive.

Assuming you go ahead with your purchase, the Retailer will get in touch to finalise the necessary payment and contract details and arrange a convenient date to deliver your new car. You can of course still choose to collect your new car from the Retailer should you so wish.

Rachael Thompson, Sales Director, Mercedes-Benz Cars UK Ltd, said: “Our aim is to give customers complete flexibility when buying their new car. This means it’s now possible to find and buy a Mercedes-Benz or smart without leaving the house. Using our Online Showroom, customers can tailor the purchase journey to suit their needs – customers can also opt to ‘click and collect’ their new car.”

Used Car Chart

Image courtesy of SMMT

UK used car market bounces back 4.4% in third quarter

The used car market increased by 4.4% in Q3 in the UK following two consecutive quarters of decline, according to latest figures by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.

However, the UK’s used car market is still down, with 1,070,941 fewer transactions over the first nine months of the year, which represents an overall decline of -17.5%.

With England in a new lockdown and the introduction of tougher restrictions and ‘firebreaks’ across the devolved nations, sales in the fourth quarter are expected to be heavily affected. The re-opening of used car outlets, which tend to be spacious premises with outdoor areas, which can accommodate social distancing far more easily than other retail environments, would certainly help prevent further downward activity in the marketplace, allowing the latest, lowest emitting vehicles to filter through to the second hand market.

Volvo Buses continues to electrify European cities

Volvo Buses continued to strengthen its position in the European market for electromobility system solutions and electrically powered buses. In recent year´s the company has received a large number of new orders from cities in Europe, including Lodz in Poland, Den Bosch in The Netherlands, Bodö and Ålesund in Norway, Aarhus in Denmark and Gothenburg and Malmö in Sweden.

Håkan Agnevall, President of Volvo Buses, commented:

“Cities in Europe are increasingly focusing on public transport systems that are sustainable from both environmental and financial perspectives. With our wide range of electrified vehicles and comprehensive system solutions, we can offer our customers several competitive and flexible alternatives for attractive, quiet and emission-free operations.”