The Vichy showroom (Allier) opens today in a sector in complete upheaval

The association of car dealers in Vichy is organizing its own car show this weekend at the Palais du Lac de Vichy. A meeting eagerly awaited by the dealers of the eleven members of the Vichy basin, who have been deprived of this major commercial event for their activities in 2020 and 2021 due to the health crisis.

A complicated year
The much-anticipated meeting of 2022, the end of sales of new thermal cars, the shortage of materials for production, is far from being a long, calm river between the measures announced for the automotive sector. Fuel shortages, not forgetting the hail that destroyed several hundred cars in Allier on June 4.

“Our forty-seven-year-old association aims to manage events for eleven member dealers representing twenty-four brands,” explains Michel Baril, president of the Vichy-based car dealers’ association.

A retired dealer, he still follows developments in the sector very closely with supporting figures: “The 2022 market is down 20% from 2019 pre-Covid. The start of the year is 11% lower than in 2021. But we have a 5% increase for October 2022. The market is starting to rise. It’s been working fine since October, people need to change after the summer. »

Electric car
Another figure put forward by Michel Baril is the development of electric cars, which represent 13% of the French market. In September 2022, more electric models were sold than diesel. In percentage terms, I think it’s more exciting than the euro. »

Regarding the ban on the sale of vehicles with gasoline or diesel thermal engines, which is planned for 2035, Michel Baril trusts the manufacturers: “Of course we will have electricity, but we will have heat energy with fuels other than gas fuels. »

But the professional knows that there is still progress for electricity. Today, it is basically the second car to cover 300 km. For a week, small courses about Vichy have been held. They are often small vehicles, easy to charge with a socket at home. »

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The future of electric vehicles certainly depends on the autonomy of Michel Baril, because “today we are 500 km away in total. 600 km was necessary, especially for those of us in a central position in the Auvergne. But we will get there, we have already seen a lot of progress in batteries and they will continue to improve. »

The president of the association of car dealers in Vichy, in particular, thinks of companies that will offer their replacement rather than looking for more batteries: “Networks will be created. Chargers will be standardized so we can use it everywhere. »

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There are more questions for hybrids, which are having their heyday: “It’s meant for people who drive a little bit. But there is still diesel for the big rollers like delegates, companies, those who travel 25,000-30,000 km a year. The hybrid costs more because its electric range is between 50 and 100 km. Then gasoline takes over and consumes more than diesel on a long trip. »

When Michel Baril is asked if the word diesel has become a swear word, he assures us that these cars today are “no more polluting than gasoline. Fortunately, there are many advances with AdBlue and filters. And the consumption is less.

But he thinks that this market will develop according to the autonomy of electricity. è Engine selection. Regarding the choice of engine, Michel Baril, as a former salesman, can only turn to the professionals: “Between buying gasoline, electric or hybrid, it’s such a different cost. You should make your choice based on your driving, exact usage. Therefore, you should discuss this with your dealer. »

A perfect passage reminiscent of the Vichy show, “there will be one hundred new cars presented by eleven dealers. Rather than going from one garage to another in an hour, you cycle through all the brands. The show takes place at the Palais du Lac on Friday, November 11, Saturday, November 12 and Sunday, November 13 from 10:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

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250 used cars will be presented in the car park. This is less than in other years. “Due to our shortage of components, we have longer delivery times for new vehicles. For some brands, we can reach a year before delivery, so the opportunity works. Dealerships in the Vichy Basin also suffered from a severe hailstorm on June 4, and there were many cars beyond repair. People took what they found. »

Denis Lorut

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