As a women’s car insurance worker you have to keep your finger on the pulse of all things motoring oriented, and the latest buzzword to hit media car-pages is ‘scrappage’.
It sounds like a good deal, doesn’t it – trade in your old car and get £2,000 off a shiny new one – but for many potential vehicle buyers it isn’t going to mean much.
Firstly, the trade-in vehicle has to be a T reg or older; that is, it must have been registered in the UK on or before 31 August 1999. So, that rules my V-reg Astra out of the deal, straight off.
Secondly, waiting a few years until my family banger becomes eligible isn’t going to happen either, because the scheme won’t be running when it reaches its 10th year on the road.
No, the government run incentive scheme is only a short-term initiative to boost the failing UK car manufacturing industry and will end in March 2010, or sooner if British motorists spend the £300 million fund that has been set aside by politicians before that date.
So, who is likely to cash in and benefit from the government’s generosity then?
Well, it appears that older motorists have led the charge to buy cheaper new cars, with one commentator saying that interest, so far, has been sparked in many retired people; those who have had the same car for a long time perhaps and, as they are currently getting little return on their savings, wish to cash in with a cheaper purchase whilst downsizing to a smaller, more economical vehicle.
Bully for them!
So, as a disgruntled non-new car buyer am I missing the real point of this scheme, which is actually an attempt to save the jobs of thousands of car workers who are staring down the barrel of the jobseeker’s allowance gun as they watch car factories nationwide close their doors and let their employees go. If you look at it that way then of course it’s a great idea – if it works.
But detractors have been quick to point out the flaws of the scheme for buyers, such as the fact that the £2,000 benefit will last a total of approximately 88 days, as that is generally how long it takes for a new car to depreciate by 2K.
And then there might be the less scrupulous dealer who will take your old car, give you the £2,000 scrappage deal, but just happen to neglect to mention to you that your car is actually worth more than £2,000 on the open market. That would never happen, surely.
No, scrappage is a good thing, and if many people are encouraged to buy smaller cars it would mean they’d be getting cheap car insurance quotes as well as being kinder to the planet. Huzzah!
One news report even made the comment that it could only happen in the UK; after being offered a £2,000 reduction on the price of a luxury object people are moaning about it with a jaded yet cynical vigour.
So, if you’ve got money saved, your current car is over 10 years old, and your women’s car insurance quote is through the roof, why not go to your local car dealership and see if they are participating in the scheme. You could get a shiny new small car that would cut your motor cover costs and reduce your carbon footprint all in one go.