Reacting to the tale of the offshore Alfa
To the Editor,
It was good to read about Geoff Barton's experience of buying an Alfa Romeo 156 in Denmark (May 22 edition). But he may have got just as good a deal much closer to the UK.
By chance, I checked the prices of the 156 at my local dealer in the south of the Netherlands, as I am thinking of replacing our 156 1.9JTD with the new Sportwagon.
The Dutch price was almost identical to the Danish price. Also, I think it would be much quicker to fly across to the Netherlands on a plane and drive back to the UK via the channel tunnel. It is five hours door-to-door to south London from Eindhoven. And you can load your car up with cheap drinks in France!
Denmark is certainly one of the cheapest markets for some makes, but for some reason the Netherlands can offer extremely competitive prices for Alfa Romeo.
I am a director of Rover Anderlecht, a Rover garage in Brussels. Here, around half of our turnover up to March 17 (BMW announcement) was with the UK -particularly on Land Rover products, where the savings have been spectacular.
Via our DAF trucks garage in Brussels, I am even selling right-hand-drive Leyland DAF 7.5 tonne trucks back to UK customers where the price difference is also enormous.
In the end, it all comes down to exchange rates on the day - but the pound has to slip a lot further before prices even out across the EU.
To the Editor,
I enjoyed reading about Geoff Barton buying a bargain price Alfa Romeo in Denmark. One tends to be rather on the cautious side with regard to these offers and opportunities.
But please allow me one comment: For Geoff to brag about not having known that Hamburg has a port is a significant sign of ignorance. I realize Geoff was in a hurry to catch his ferry back to the UK, but surely he should have known that Hamburg has a rather big port facility - the largest in Germany, in fact. Maybe I should have the Hamburg port authority send Geoff some information material.
And by the way, Hamburg is also a very nice city with something like two million people living there.
Deloitte Consulting, via e-mail