MOTORISTS CONTINUE TO CUT CORNERS IN ATTEMPT TO SAVE MONEY DESPITE BEING BETTER OFF

Most drivers (47%) spend more disposable income on their car than anything else according to new figures from Halfords Autocentres – well ahead of holidays (21%) and socialising with friends (13%).

As a consequence, 1 in 10 continue to cut back on car maintenance in a bid to save money (equivalent to 2.8 million cars), with 41% placing the reliability and safety of their car last on the list of motoring concerns.

The findings are in a new report from the independent garage business, which show despite the economic upturn motorists’ behaviour hasn’t changed and they continue to make some ill-advised compromises to car maintenance and safety.

Rory Carlin from Halfords Autocentres explains: “Despite a rise in personal earnings, stable inflation and fuel prices that are at a three-year low, drivers feel that they are already paying a high enough price for their motoring and are unwilling to spend more on anything they feel is unnecessary.

“However, car maintenance isn’t just necessary it is essential and we have uncovered some shocking admissions that are likely to be a hangover from the recession.”

Of the drivers that admitted to cutting back on maintenance to save money, 60% are no longer servicing their cars in line with manufacturers’ guidelines – a figure almost unchanged from the more austere financial times of 2012.

A worryingly high percentage (43%) also reported waiting to replace tyres until they are at or below the legal minimum (1.6mm), 32% are not investigating fresh noises or dashboard warning lights and 25% said they had avoided replacing brake pads.

Commenting on the findings, Maria McCarthy author of The Girls' Car Handbook added: “A lack of technical know-how and the complexity of modern cars can make maintenance a daunting prospect.

“Find a garage you trust, or get a friend to recommended one, and build a rapport with them that will enable you to discuss which repairs are essential and which are advisory - then budget for on-going maintenance.

“If your car is under warranty, this is doubly important and you’ve got to be very on the ball about having services done at the right time or you risk it becoming invalid.”

To read Halfords Autocentres research in full visit http://www.halfordsautocentres.com/friend-of-the-motorist

Ends

Media contacts:

Stuart Humphreys, Automotive PR Manager - T: 01527 513410, M: 07738 751930

E: stuart.humphreys@halfords.co.uk

James Dale, PR Co-ordinator - T: 01527 513315

E: james.dale@halfords.co.uk

Notes to Editors:

Friend of the Motorist research based 2037 respondents to a survey conducted by Your Say Pays during February 2014. 

About Halfords Autocentres

As a leading independent MOT, car service, repair and tyre garage network, Halfords Autocentres carries out 400,000 MOTs a year. It employs highly trained ATA accredited technicians who use the latest in vehicle diagnostic equipment at over 300 UK sites to deliver dealership quality work at affordable prices.

Being independent experts means that we are able to service, repair and maintain any make or model of car in line with the manufacturer’s standards, whilst offering a local price match promise and peace of mind in the form of a minimum guarantee of 12 months or 12,000 miles on work carried out. (See website for terms and conditions).

The Halfords Autocentres name may be a recent addition to the Halfords Group, but our heritage spans more than three decades and we serve over 750,000 customers every year - with over 9 out of 10 of them being happy to recommend us to their friends.

www.halfordsautocentres.com  

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About Us

Halfords is the UK's leading retailer of automotive, cycling and leisure products and, through Halfords Autocentres, also one of the UK's leading independent car servicing and repair operators. Halfords customers shop at 465 stores in the UK and ROI and at halfords.com for pick-up at their local store or direct home delivery. Halfords Autocentres operates from around 300 sites nationally and offers motorists dealership-quality MOTs, repairs and car servicing at affordable prices. The Halfords group strategy is based on three pillars: · Supporting Drivers Of Every Car · Inspiring Cyclists Of Every Age · Equipping Families For Their Leisure Time The Getting Into Gear strategy for the Retail business is based on executing in five key areas in order to deliver a significantly-enhanced customer experience: · Service Revolution · The H Factor · Stores Fit to Shop · 21st Century Infrastructure · Click with the Digital Future Halfords employs approximately 12,000 colleagues and sells around 9,000 product lines in store, increasing to around 160,000 Retail products online. The Retail offering encompasses significant ranges in car parts, cycling products, in-car technology, child seats, roof boxes and camping equipment. Halfords’ own cycling brands include Apollo, Carrera and Boardman cycles, augmented by a range of other brands of cycles and accessories, including Kona, Mongoose, Raleigh and Pinarello. In Auto, the Halfords Essentials and Halfords Enhanced ranges are sold alongside brands such as Generic Electric, Bosch, Garmin and TomTom. The Retail Auto offering was recently augmented by the introduction of Car Parts Direct, a service delivering rapid customer access to around 130,000 car parts. In Travel Solutions, Halfords sells a premium range of camping equipment including brands such as Vango and Outwell. Halfords offers customers expert advice and a fitting service for car parts, child seats, satellite navigation and in-car entertainment systems, and a service for cycles.

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Quick facts

47% of drivers spend more disposable income on their car than anything else
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1 in 10 drivers continue to cut back on car maintenance in a bid to save money (equivalent to 2.8 million cars)
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Quotes

Drivers feel that they are already paying a high enough price for their motoring and are unwilling to spend more on anything they feel is unnecessary.
Rory Carlin
Car maintenance isn’t just necessary it is essential and we have uncovered some shocking admissions that are likely to be a hangover from the recession.
Rory Carlin