Good news just over the horizon?

Published:  27 April, 2020

There could good news waiting for independent garages on the other side of the Coronavirus outbreak it has been suggested, with motorists looking to the sector for support once the pandemic passes.

Mike Schlup, MD at Kalimex is predicting a ‘surge in demand’ from motorists for their local mechanics’ expertise and problem- solving capabilities – once the COVID-19 lockdown ends.

He explained the thinking behind his positive prognosis. “Experience shows that when we enter a period of economic uncertainty – the tightening of our belts as we will all invariably be doing in the coming months - our attention shifts from buying new to making do.  With the automotive sector this translates into motorists keeping their existing vehicles; cars and LCVs on the road for longer rather than buying new, or opting to replace a vehicle with another used vehicle.  We need look no further than the figures published in March for new car sales as an illustration this is already happening.  Sales were down by 41% with the figure for April set to be even lower.

“Undoubtedly the worthy winner in all of this is the professional motor mechanic. The motorist, the commercial customer and the fleet manager will be counting on their mechanic for repairs that represent good value. Problems solved without the need for an outlay that makes a significant dent in the budget. Problems nipped in the bud with high-quality additives.”

Mike added: "By contrast, the large dealerships selling new cars with their accompanying service contracts will feel the chill from the last few months long into 2020 and possibly beyond.”

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