• Motor retail

Motor Retail - overview

After a number of years of growth, led by record levels of new vehicle registrations, the motor retail industry hit its peak in early 2017, before economic uncertainty, ‘Diesel-gate’ and a saturation of the market by pre-registered vehicles started to take effect.  As a result 2016 might have been the last ‘great’ year for a while as dealers fasten their seatbelts for what might be an unpredictable few years ahead.

The new vehicle registration cycle is hitting a downturn and there is continued pressure from manufacturers on margins and investment in showrooms to meet dealer standards. Technological advancement is driving drastic shifts in consumer buying patterns and with the introduction of autonomous and connected vehicles the car industry is rapidly evolving. More than ever dealerships need an adviser with the right experience to support them.


In-depth sector knowledge

BDO understands the complex mechanics of automotive retailing. Our clients include franchised dealerships and used car operations, and range from single to multi-franchised groups. This means we can pinpoint where you can enhance efficiency and protect profit. And with our broader role in the industry where we have run seminars and workshops, met a variety of stakeholders, and carried out the audits of the AM Awards, we can keep you informed of best practice, changes, challenges and opportunities as they arise. This combination of breadth and depth has made us one of the top advisers to motor dealerships in the UK.

Each year we publish three key publications to provide insight into current hot topics and sector performance, with guidance on how dealers can best prepare for the challenges ahead.  There are links below to the most recent Motor 150 Report, NADA Update and the Motor Salary Survey. 


Regional focus, national strength

Our motor retail team is led from Southampton and responsible for training and support to other BDO offices across the UK. This ensures that wherever you are, there is someone with the knowledge and experience to help you. With around 50 senior professionals representing years of experience in car and commercial vehicle retailing and aftersales, we can advise on all aspects of running a dealership and deliver solutions that work in the real world.


How we can help

We provide a variety of services including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Statutory audit and financial statement preparation
  • Corporation tax compliance and advice
  • Capital allowance reviews
  • Risk advisory and internal control services
  • VAT and employment tax advice
  • Corporate finance advice and services including due diligence and advice in connection with mergers and acquisitions.

More recently we have also worked with clients to advice on the Apprenticeship Levy, the new Corporate Criminal Offence legislation and the refinancing of banking facilities.

Contact us