SBDC e-news – July 2016 New car retailing

New car retailing under the spotlight – have your say

A market study by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) into the new car retailing industry in Australia is currently underway and interested parties are encouraged to contact the ACCC to make a contribution.

More than a million new cars are sold in Australia each year, most of which represent a significant purchase for consumers, but in a significant number of cases the purchasing experience is less than satisfactory.

The ACCC and other Australian Consumer Law agencies continue to receive a high number of complaints from consumers about defects in vehicles from a range of manufacturers.

Information will be channelled into the market study from the public as well as a range of enforcement, education and research projects on the following key areas:

  • compliance with consumer guarantee obligations and the ability of consumers to enforce their rights;

  • false, misleading and deceptive practices in performance, fuel efficiency, fuel consumption and emissions;

  • the effect on competition and consumers of post-sale care arrangements (such as servicing); and

  • whether consumers and businesses could be affected by any restrictions on access to vehicle data.

The ACCC will release an issues paper later this year which will provide detailed information on the scope of the study. At this time, written submissions from the public will be sought.

A draft report of findings will be released in the first quarter of 2017. In the meantime, parties can register their interest in being contacted about the study at: newcars@accc.gov.au