Why more people will opt for PCPs - but we should learn from probe
PCPs 'here to stay' whether some people like them or not, former Ford Ireland chief insists
Personal Contract Plans (PCPs) are here to stay whether some people like them or not, a leading expert claims.
He bases his conviction on the fact that thousands of young people, in particular, could not otherwise afford to own or drive a new, and therefore safer, car.
Former Ford Ireland chief Eddie Murphy (right) says PCPs have come under the spotlight especially with the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) announcing it has begun a fact-finding inquiry into how the deals work.
But he is "firmly of the view" that PCPs are here to stay. "And they will account for a higher proportion of retail sales in years to come," he insists.
He told Independent Motors: "For sure, PCPs are not for every customer.
"But they most certainly are for an increasing number of younger buyers who otherwise would have to compromise for an older, higher-maintenance secondhand vehicle."
He says professional, well-run dealerships should always be 'canvassed' for their latest PCP deals and, armed with that information, people should make an informed decision.
For the more immediate future he believes: "There may be short term indigestion ahead for PCP advocates due to the impact of Brexit and the likelihood of cheaper imports versus Minimum Future Guaranteed Values but I am one customer who will always look for a PCP quote."
He was adamant that the CCPC enquiry should be welcomed by all.
"By all means let the research commence, and in the fullness of time, the findings will determine how professionally this finance product is communicated, offered and sold to the end customer," says.
"So be it and let us indeed learn from the findings."
Mr Murphy's comments will add to the level of focus currently on the whole area of car financing.
After a major surge in take-up of PCPs over the past three to four years, the finance plans came in for criticism as some people felt they were not, or hadn't been made, fully aware of the implications of the details in their deals.
Mr Murphy was among the first major industry figures to highlight the practical application of PCPs.
He was chairman and MD of Henry Ford & Son from April 2001 until December 2014.
He also served as SIMI President in 2010/2011.
* How do you feel about PCPs?
Let us know: firstname.lastname@example.org