Bumper membership at Scottish Motor Trade Association

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Scotland’s motor trade body has seen membership accelerate through the 1,300 mark – the highest level in more than 50 years.

Sandy Burgess, chief executive of the Scottish Motor Trade Association (SMTA), said he was “delighted” at the growth in numbers, coming as it does during a turbulent period for the industry.

“It is fantastic to see our membership continue to grow, significantly in the SME [small and medium-sized enterprise] and independent sector, and it is encouraging to see that in these challenging times that the motor industry is facing we are able to expand our membership base across Scotland and many of the islands.

“SMTA has much to offer the Scottish motor trade including our unique buying group, our modern apprenticeship scheme soon to be supported by an exciting online training programme, our in-house MOT product, as well as our fully Scottish-based used car warranty company Scotsure and access to our industry specific SMTA digital marketing service.”

The association, which was founded in 1903, has its headquarters in South Queensferry.

Last week, it emerged that new car sales had motored ahead last month in Scotland, bucking the downward trend seen elsewhere in the UK.

There was a 9.6 per cent hike in new car registrations in Scotland during January, compared with the same month last year. Almost 12,000 vehicles were bought, up from 10,900 a year earlier.

Sales of new cars for the UK as a whole fell last month although demand for electric models surged.

Burgess said at the time: “Whilst there is no doubt that some of the growth will be as a result of units from previous delayed deliveries coming through, we are still significantly better than the tracking performance elsewhere in the UK.”