Huge car price increases in Europe? - Aprilia
Reading today's HJ car column in the Telegraph, a reader is enquiring about bringing in a car from Europe. HJ states that 'Europe has suffered huge price inflation since the imposition of the Euro'.

Now I know that the GBP has dropped in value since the spring, making Euro imports more expensive. But have the European car prices (in Euro's) actually risen much? I'm over in Europe lot, but I don't really look at new car prices. I've not noticed other goods rising in price by much (although restaurant meals seem to have gone up a bit).
Any car importers (or 'would be' importers) care to comment?
Huge car price increases in Europe? - Dan J
Currency does factor into this situation but it isn\'t the only thing.

Although all manufacturers charge a different price for all their cars in each country, sometimes even varying price across a country, prices now are much closer than they ever were pre-tax.

Before all the \"rip-off Britain\" days manufacturers used to charge significantly lower prices in poorer and more highly taxed countries to shift more metal and because all the other manufacturers were doing it. Accordingly you would (particularly when it was done for tax reasons) pay a similar amount for a certain car in one country as you would in another, even though the pre-tax prices were different.

Along came rip-off Britain and manufacturers being fined colossal amounts for being awkward and low and behold, as prices in the UK have benefitted from market and public pressure, prices have started to be levelled off across the board.

People get confused because they are told in Which/The Sun or wherever else that the Focus they are buying is 4 grand cheaper in Holland. Well not for the people who live in the country it isn\'t, in fact in a lot of countries such as Norway even with the reduced pre-tax prices the locals are paying more. Everyone wants something for nothing - they import cars from abroad and then expect their local dealer who hasn\'t benefitted at all from the transaction to fix it who then bills whatever company made the car\'s UK headquarters who also didn\'t benefit from the sale of the car.

Be thankful we\'re the ones who have benefitted because the rest of Europe certainly hasn\'t. Britain may have been a cash-cow for the motor manufacturers but it certainly isn\'t any more. And funnily enough the manufacturers weren\'t going to just sit by and watch their profits diminish hence prices have increased.

Then couple that with the currency movement and it now simply isn\'t worth importing cars from Europe in most cases.

In the current climate, I\'d take the dealer service and the extra warranty any day - there are good deals to be had these days.
Huge car price increases in Europe? - RogerL
I've only heard this second-hand but prices in Spain have gone up through the roof since joining the Euro, everywher is as expensive as central Barcelona. My mate moved out there but came back after six months because of the impossible prices.
Huge car price increases in Europe? - Aprilia
I am very surprised by these responses. I've spent about half of this year working in Germany and have not noticed any 'huge' price rises in the things I buy. Maybe it is different in different countries?

There have been a few news items on German TV about unjustified price increases, but they largely seemed to relate to smaller shopkeepers 'rounding up' when doing the conversion from DM to Euro. Certainly the hotel, food and transport costs I'm paying haven't changed much over the past year or so and remain substantially below the UK.

Moreover, none of the people I met at BMW mentioned large car price rises. I will make some in-dpeth enquiries when I next go over and report back. I was really looking for some concrete data; i.e. 'a year ago car cost X, now it costs Y threfore increase = 20%' or whatever.
Huge car price increases in Europe? - andymc {P}
Sorry for non-motoring related content, but I was interested in this as it is the exact opposite of what people I know have encountered. My own brother has just moved out to Spain because the cost of living is so much cheaper than here - property is easier to buy, food prices are lower in proportion to average pay. Friends of mine who have retired have done the same because their state pensions will go further. However, there are (as here) significant regional differences in property prices, cost of living etc - for Madrid and Barcelona think London and York.
Anyway, the most important aspect of all this is that I have my choice of el cheapo Spanish holidays. ;)

andymc
Huge car price increases in Europe? - andymc {P}
PS my reply was to RogerL's posting.
andymc
Huge car price increases in Europe? - Chas{P}
Just been to Gran Canaria...

Paid equivalent of E5.80 or £4.25 for two bottles (500ml) of Coke at a waterpark. Makes GB forecourt pricing a bargain!
Huge car price increases in Europe? - LongDriver {P}
The same two bottles of Coke would probably cost you a tenner in Alton Towers, comparing like for like...

How about the San Miguel Index for price comparisons - a bit like the McDonalds Index but for a much "better" product?

For example: 1 litre bottle of San Miguel, purchased from a large supermarket in Spain costs 0.95 Euros, or about 65p. The same litre bottle in the UK costs £1.85 or 2.85 Euros.

To keep the motoring theme:

1 week's car hire in Majorca, inclusive of £0 excess insurance and unlimited mileage, for a brand new five door Renault Clio dCi with aircon, cost me £90 this year, from an airport-based hire company....Try getting one for THAT price in the UK!!!!
 

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