Angry buyers are fed up and confused over why delivery charges are payable on new cars
We have had a steady stream of queries over the past month or so about delivery charges and how much they add to the real price of the car.
This letter from a reader in Milltown, Dublin 6, is typical of how and why people feel confused and angry.
Could you do anything to help get rid of a feature of sale adverts for new cars which raises my blood pressure every time?
It is the tail to the advert which says that prices are exclusive of "delivery and related charges".
What is the delivery charge?
Any new car I ever bought I collected myself. If it is the cost of having the car delivered to the point of sale, surely, as applies to all other commodities, this should be dealt with in the sale price.
What are the other charges "related" to the delivery charge ? If these are known in advance they too should be dealt with in the sale price.
Airlines were forced to drop the practice of offering a basic price exclusive of other known unavoidable charges and instead to offer inclusive fares. New-car sales outfits should be forced to do the same.
It is particularly ludicrous to hear, as has happened in recent adverts, cars costing €38,000 and €43,000 being offered with "delivery and related charges apply".
Delivery and related charges cost hundreds -- in some cases €1,000 or more. They can vary and are often negotiable so people feel they are yet another nebulous charge.
They are levied basically for:
* Delivery of car by transporter from importer's compound to dealer.
* Pre-delivery inspection.
* A short test drive.
* Clearing all protective wrapping and sprayed-on coating outside and inside.
* Adding number plates, possibly mats (in some cases) etc.
* VAT is included in 'delivery charges' quoted.
Independent Motors has consistently campaigned for them to be fully disclosed or included in the On the Road price. Some carmakers do so but too many still do not. Some dealers will negotiate a price on them if it means closing a deal.
That suggests a huge element of uncertainty about what constitutes a delivery charge in the first place. Let's have clarity and transparency.
What do you think?