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Vauxhall boss: 'This is not boom and bust territory'

In his first interview, the new head of Vauxhall UK has told ITV News that rising house prices are helping car sales because of increased consumer confidence.

But Tim Tozer insisted to Business Editor Joel Hills that a rise in car sales did not herald a return to "boom and bust territory".

Vauxhall boss: 'The good times are back' for car industry

The new head of car company Vauxhall has told ITV News Business Editor Joel Hills that "the good times are back" following an upturn in car sales.


Honda job losses are 'a wake-up call for Government'

Unite described the expected loss of 340 jobs at a Honda plant in Swindon as "a devastating blow" and said that the fact people do not "have the cash to spend" should cause the Government serious concern.

These job losses are a devastating blow, not just for these workers but for the thousands more across the industry whose work is dependent on the Honda plant.

Today's losses are also a wake-up call to the UK government.

The economy is far too fragile to proclaim a recovery - those workers losing their jobs today will find claims that the country is turning a corner an insult.

The truth is that there is simply no pick up in the incomes of Honda's customers, either here or in the eurozone.

– Tony Murphy, national officer of the Unite union


Ford and Vauxhall top car sales for 2013

On average, an additional 600 extra cars were registered per day in 2013 than in 2012. Private sales made up 1.07 million of the registrations last year - a rise of 15.6% on the 2012 share.

Both petrol and diesel-engined vehicle sales rose in 2013, but petrol's share of the market grew slightly - from 47.8% in 2012 to 48.8% in 2013 - while diesel's share dipped from 50.8% in 2012 to 49.8% in 2013. Alternatively-fuelled vehicles remained flat 1.4%.

The best selling cars in 2013 were:

1 Ford Fiesta; 2 Ford Focus; 3 Vauxhall Corsa; 4 Vauxhall Astra; 5 Volkswagen Golf; 6 Nissan Qashqai; 7 BMW 3 Series; 8 Volkswagen Polo; 9 BMW 1 Series; 10 Peugeot 208.

New car sales hit six-year high

New car sales raced to a six-year high in 2013, the motor industry has announced.

A total of 2,264,737 new cars were registered in 2013 - a 10.8 percent rise on the 2012 figure and the best annual total since the pre-recession year of 2007, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders said.

The Ford Fiesta was the top selling car. Credit: Oliver Berg/DPA/Press Association Images

The 2013 total was boosted by a 23.76 percent rise, to nearly 153,000, in sales in December - the 22nd successive month of increases

Millions spent on extra premium car insurance costs

The Competition Commission is to look at ways of reducing the cost of car insurance premiums. Credit: PA Wire

The Competition Commission claimed that in most cases the party managing the accident claim - typically the non-fault insurer or intermediary - was not the party liable to pay the costs of the claim.

The commission estimates the extra premium costs due to the separation of control and liability on replacement cars and repairs to be between £150 million and £200 million a year.

It is considering whether to make a driver's own insurer responsible for providing a replacement vehicle or to give at-fault insurers greater opportunity to take control over managing claims.

There may also be caps on the cost of providing a replacement vehicle and on repair costs, as well as compulsory audits of repair quality after the watchdog found that following an accident too many repairs were not completed to the required standard.

Drivers footing the bill for 'unnecessary insurance costs'

Too many drivers are footing the bill for unnecessary costs incurred during the insurance claims process following an accident, the Competition Commission believes.

These costs are initially borne by the insurers of at-fault drivers, but they feed through into increased insurance premiums for all drivers, the watchdog said.

Alasdair Smith, who is leading the investigation, said:

We are now considering a range of possible measures, some of them far-reaching reforms, to ensure that the market better serves the interests of customers.

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