Time to make your March 21-plate new car purchase

Senior couple on a US road trip, seen through car windscreen

Here comes summer... is it time for a new 21-plate puchase? - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

By the time you read this, the Prime Minister’s plan of coming out of lockdown will have been announced, analysed, praised and criticised and you will have started to work out how it will change your lives this summer.

Whatever your politics, the rolling out of the vaccination programme has been recognised throughout the world as not only providing early access for the UK but also ensuring the realisation of the importance of the whole world having the opportunity to have and give everyone the vaccine as soon as possible.

Most of us have found this last lockdown more difficult to deal with and there has been tremendous pressure on families and loved ones to keep positive.

The first celebration event and the start of longer days and warmer weather, comes with Easter and so the hope of seeing family and friends is high on the list of things to plan and look forward to.

For the motor industry, March is normally the largest month of the year with the new registration plate and traditionally many leases coming to an end and changes to made.

Last year before the end of March the first lockdown arrived and many disappointed customers had to wait until June to get their new car.

We now have clear rules so although showrooms are closed at this moment, most dealers are operating digitally and through telephone contact with their customers and many deliveries have already been made on a 'click and collect' basis or delivery to home. 

Beautiful girl business lady, summer city, rides car interior. Tanned skin, formal suit long hair ca

Handovers of sanitised vehicles are completed with a combination of videos and properly social distanced presentations with proper PPE. - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

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Handovers of sanitised vehicles are completed with a combination of videos and properly social distanced presentations with proper PPE.

You can be further reassured by asking what your dealer is doing, as many are now checking their own employees with regular tests - weekly at Vospers - to look after both them and our customers.

Used car sales have continued at about 75 per cent of normal during January and February so dealers are continuing to need good, clean part exchanges to satisfy that demand.

Manufacturers have many enticing offers and there are many ways to improve your economy and the quality of air on the planet by moving to hybrids if you are not yet ready to go pure electric.

I was commenting on driving the new Ford Puma Hybrid last week and have decided it fits this situation very well.

We still have a manual gearbox and there is no need for any charging facility but as well as good acceleration it is possible to get improved economy as well.

The ride is firm but comfortable and my wife appreciates the additional space over the Fiesta and particularly likes the additional space provided by the well in the boot for her dirty shoes after a good walk.

The looks are also individual and distinctive and the additional height off the ground not only gives a good view of the road and surroundings but gives extra clearance from the potholes and excess water we are currently experiencing.  

All in all, it's clear why What Car awarded it 'Car of the Year'.

I look forward to joining you next week. Stay safe and keep smiling.