Industry News: Used import option still ‘alive’ for Australia

David Vinsen

David Vinsen

The opening up of Australia to used imports is still very much alive, in spite of the assistant minister’s statement to a road safety conference last week, says David Vinsen, head of the New Zealand and Australian IMVIA organisations.

Vinsen attended two of the public consultation meetings last week in Sydney and Melbourne, and found the dialogue to be “open, without pre-conceived positions”, on the used imports question.

“Regardless of what the assistant minister (Jamie Briggs) told the national road safety forum, the consultative process is comprehensive and progressing well,” says Vinsen. Continue reading “Used import option still ‘alive’ for Australia” »

Industry News: Turners on the block

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The independent directors of Turners Group NZ, have backed an offer from finance company Dorchester Pacific to take over the firm.

The Turners board has endorsed the $82 million take-over bid by Dorchester Pacific, saying the $3 a share offer was within the valuation range put forward by Grant Samuel in its report, no other offer had been made, and that the finance company already held about 41% of the firm’s shares and was likely to take a controlling 50% stake.

Dorchester is offering either $3 a share cash, two-year notes that pay interest of 9% and convert to Dorchester shares, ordinary shares of Dorchester or any combination. Continue reading “Turners on the block” »

Industry News: Dealer’s son wins maiden Toyota 86 race

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Christchurch driver 14-year-old Marcus Armstrong has won his first Toyota Finance 86 Championship race.

The son of car dealership mogul Rick Armstrong charged through from sixth on the grid for the final race to lead and win, becoming the youngest driver yet to win a Toyota category race in New Zealand.

Armstrong took the lead after a multi-car incident with four laps to go and held out a hard-charging Ash Blewett to win. Continue reading “Dealer’s son wins maiden Toyota 86 race” »

Industry News: Increased car sales driven by construction confidence

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An increase in major construction projects in Canterbury is flowing through to firm demand in other areas, as employment opportunities continue to pull new workers to the region,” says ASB chief economist Nick Tuffley.

“Households are feeling more confident about making major purchases, and this is reflected in increased car sales,” Tuffley adds.

The ‘Cantometer’ index rose to a fresh high of 1.9 in September, compared to the previous high of 1.8 in August, reflecting the role of increased construction as a key economic driver in the region. Continue reading “Increased car sales driven by construction confidence” »

Industry News: Dealer gets sideways in Seattle gravel

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Revelling in the familiarity of getting to grips with gravel, Dunedin Suzuki dealer principal Emma Gilmour says she enjoyed the Red Bull Global Rallycross Championship’s (GRC) penultimate round in Seattle.

Held at the DirtFish Rally School in Snoqualmie, the circuit was about 10-15% dusty tarmac and the rest was a familiar favourite of the New Zealand rally driver.

“It was a predominantly gravel track. I was allowed to drive rally-style, which of course I loved!” says Gilmour. Continue reading “Dealer gets sideways in Seattle gravel” »

Columns: DealerTalk: On the road

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AutoTalk’s digital marketing columnist Peter Aitken has hit the road to the 17th Digital Dealer conference – being held this week in Las Vegas, USA .

And he is not alone. With him is Autoplay boss Craig Brown – catching up with other NZ dealers along the way.

And he is also including AutoTalk readers – sending messages from the road about their tour, which includes visiting a number of dealers, most with things to teach us, along the way. Continue reading “DealerTalk: On the road” »

Industry News: Top five return for Toyota Finance 86 championship

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The Toyota Finance 86 Championship, returns to the track this weekend and the top five drivers from last season are back to do battle once more.

Returning racers including last season’s champion Jamie McNee, Ash Blewett and Callum Quin (second and third in the 2013-2014 series), Aucklander Tom Alexander (fourth in 2013-2014) and Matt Gibson (fifth in 2013-2014).

The championship kicks off at Ricoh Taupo Motorsport Park this weekend as part of the opening round of the BNT NZ V8 Supertourer series. Continue reading “Top five return for Toyota Finance 86 championship” »

Industry News: Car hacking next big threat: expert

Andry RakotonirainyThe car of the future will be safer, smarter and offer greater high-tech gadgets, but without improved security the risk of car hacking is real, according to a Queensland road safety expert.

Professor Andry Rakotonirainy, from QUT’s Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety (CARRS), has researched the security systems of existing fleet, future autonomous and connected cars and found there was little protection against hacking, as vehicles become computers on wheels.

“The security protection on cars is virtually non-existent, it is at a level of protection that a desktop computer system had in the 1980s – the basic security requirements such as authentication, confidentiality and integrity are not strong,” he says. Continue reading “Car hacking next big threat: expert” »

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