27 Nov 18

CARA to be “more proactive”

Four new members, one mission achieved and several more to complete: long story short, that’s the result of the fifth General Assembly of CARA, the European Car Remarketing Association, held in Barcelona this Monday. 

Remarketing is a huge industry, but at European level, it’s flying under the radar. Fixing that is CARA’s mission. And it’s never been more relevant than now. 

Huge opportunities
“Not just for the money you can make, also for the money you can lose”, said Wolfgang Reinhold opening the GA, referring to the huge opportunities – and risks – resulting from an ecosystem that is now primarily digital, and as a consequence also more and more international, complex and risky. “That’s why we need to be more proactive as an organisation”, he said.

CARA’s renewed website is one example of that attitude. Its content is another: the organisation has worked out guidelines on fair wear and tear – one of its key ‘deliverables’ – and they are now available via the website.

The Association has decided to focus its energies on two further key deliverables: mileage fraud, and transnational transport solutions.  

Red tape
The EU might be a single market, but there’s still a huge amount of red tape (and more practical problems) that make it difficult to move vehicles across national border. 

One solution could be eCMR, an electronic certification of transported goods. But only a few countries have ratified it – Germany, crucially, hasn’t (yet). “This is the tool we need”, said Mr Reinhold.

But how to push for its introduction? For this issue, and also for mileage fraud – another problem with an important international angle – it was agreed to explore solutions at EU level. “We are the experts in these matters. But if we don’t help formulate the rules in these matters, they will be imposed in the industry”.

Decision makers
Perhaps next year’s GA could be held in Brussels, closer to the institutions that could impact or enact the relevant rules – and with the participation of EU experts and decision makers.  

An extremely instructive part of the GA was presented by Christophe Louvard (Founder and Chairman of Autobiz.fr), who gave a detailed overview of the evolution of residual values of EVs – a matter of huge interest to remarketers across Europe. 

EV depreciation has dropped from 24% at the start of 2016 to around 8% now: as low as petrol cars, and lower than diesels. “EV RVs seem low because the initial price is still high; but they keep their value well over time”. 

The crucial year is 2020, when the EU will in practice penalise OEMs €22,000 per new vehicle that’s not an EV. The take-off of the electric car era, in other words, is not far off. Not far behind: the electric used-car era… 

New members
Four new members have joined CARA in the course of the past year:

  • Argus Group, a France-based group involved in various aspects of the automotive industry, from valuation over software production to consulting;
  • CarVertical, a company dedicated to building a global used-vehicle history registry;
  • Autobid.de, one of Europe’s leading vehicle remarketing companies; and
  • Autovista Group, a vehicle data specialist providing residual value forecasts, pricing and specification data and service, maintenance and repair data. 
Authored by: Frank Jacobs