Alliance & Leicester has terminated its five-year sponsorship of the Car Price Index (CPI) but has denied that the move is connected with a legal spat with Renault earlier this year.
The French car manufacturer reacted furiously to research suggesting its Laguna was the fastest- depreciating car in the UK (MW January 29). At the time, Renault said: “Alliance & Leicester should be ashamed to put its name to such badly researched and written garbage.” The car company threatened the bank with legal proceedings, which were later discontinued by Renault.
However, a spokesman for Alliance & Leicester says of the move: “It is not linked in any way with any disagreement with Renault. It was time to move on.”
The CPI was produced in conjunction with What Car? magazine, which says it will continue to monitor new and used car prices.
The CPI, intended to mimic the Retail Price Index (RPI), was launched at the height of the “rip-off Britain” campaign in 1999, since when the average price of new cars in the UK has fallen by 9.2 per cent, from over £14,000 to about £13,000. The sponsorship was useful for generating editorial coverage in print media, in which Alliance & Leicester would place inserts promoting its loans, which are used primarily for buying cars.