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Old August 16th, 2014, 05:54 PM   #11121
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Yeah, I never linger in someone's blind spot. That shit is lethal in NL, you gotta drive defensively.
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Old August 16th, 2014, 10:29 PM   #11122
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I drove the N35 and A28/A32 on thursday.. On the N35 was hardly any traffic around 20:00, A28 at Zwolle (Chris' picture) is somehow always busy when I drive there. Traffic wasn't too bad on A20 (Rotterdam) on thursday, however the A1 at Deventer was jammed.
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Old August 16th, 2014, 10:34 PM   #11123
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N35 is quite busy during the day (also off-peak) but not so much in the evening and the night. Most traffic on N35 originates in Zwolle, there isn't much through traffic, so traffic volumes decline substantially once the commuters and daytrippers are gone.

N35 is busy enough for twinning from Zwolle to Raalte, and Nijverdal to Wierden. There are plans to turn it into a 2x2, 100 km/h, controlled-access expressway, but most plans are rather vague. They will start on building the first stretch of four-lane divided around Wijthmen (pronounce that!) next year.
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Old August 17th, 2014, 05:04 PM   #11124
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A15, Botlek Bridge, Rotterdam


IMG_35335.jpg por Mark van der Meer, en Flickr


IMG_35329.jpg por Mark van der Meer, en Flickr
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Old August 18th, 2014, 02:26 AM   #11125
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Looks like a huge overhead cranes
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Old August 18th, 2014, 06:40 PM   #11126
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New car sales in Netherlands are keeping a downside trend and are projected to be only 369.000 vehicles in 2014. That would be lowest number in more than 40 years.

1999 was the record year for car sales, with 612.000 vehicles sold.

I wonder how much havoc this downturn is having on car dealerships. I bet many closed and many more are in peril, especially if one accounts for the fact cars got a lot more reliable and require less servicing and spare parts replacement than before.
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Old August 18th, 2014, 06:50 PM   #11127
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Cars last longer and high cost to buy a new car is pushing many prospective buyers into the second-hand car market. You can buy a 3 year old car for 40% less, like I did. It's a no-brainer, the taxes on new cars are exorbitant and you write a large proportion of its value off in just a few years. As a new car owner, you are basically writing off taxes. That is also why so many new cars are small - they have lower 'BPM' (car purchase tax). The price difference between an A-class (small car) and B-class (small family car) is huge. In the Netherlands, a VW Golf is twice as expensive as a Hyundai i10 or a Kia Picanto.

To supply the demand for used cars, the import of used cars has pretty much doubled since 2005. Nearly 100,000 used cars were imported to the Netherlands in 2013.

Last edited by ChrisZwolle; August 18th, 2014 at 07:00 PM.
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Old August 18th, 2014, 07:35 PM   #11128
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Overall the BPM is disgraceful in Holland. Seriously inflated prices for cars.

I also have a feeling car parts prices are inflated too, I usually buy my parts from the UK or Germany, where after postage, they are often less than half the price than here.

Eg. drive shaft, 110 euros delivered from berlin. Instead of 200 here in Holland.
Wheel bearing 50 quid delivered from the UK, instead of 150+ euros in NL.

Last edited by snowdog; August 18th, 2014 at 07:58 PM.
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Old August 19th, 2014, 01:52 AM   #11129
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Thank God for Common Market, at least you can easily buy online from outside

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
To supply the demand for used cars, the import of used cars has pretty much doubled since 2005. Nearly 100,000 used cars were imported to the Netherlands in 2013.
This is not right... used car import is a poor country thing (OK I admit I have bought used cars in foreign countries too myself ) but a wealthy country like NL should have essentially negligible used car import. Clearly the tax regime is causing strange imbalances in the market and should be reformed. I mean what is happening, Belgians return their company car lease and the B plates come off and NL plates go on? (surely making a bad comparison between Dutch and Belgians should be enough to make the politicians angry enough to change tax system )
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Old August 19th, 2014, 02:47 AM   #11130
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kanadzie View Post
This is not right... used car import is a poor country thing (OK I admit I have bought used cars in foreign countries too myself ) but a wealthy country like NL should have essentially negligible used car import. Clearly the tax regime is causing strange imbalances in the market and should be reformed. I mean what is happening, Belgians return their company car lease and the B plates come off and NL plates go on? (surely making a bad comparison between Dutch and Belgians should be enough to make the politicians angry enough to change tax system )
Well, the Dutch economy is doing really poor job compared to the neighbors in the last 5 years.

Further on, you would need to concentrate on the difference of the price index evolution for different social classes of the society. Inflation varies considerably across income groups. Stagnant incomes, increasing unemployment and inflation hitting the low social classes, while the average inflation does not exist on paper... that's where it comes from.

If you need huge quantities of sold cars, you need huge quantities of people having enough income to buy those cars. The top layer does not need them.
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Old August 19th, 2014, 03:17 PM   #11131
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It's mostly the new car market that is performing poorly. The used-car market is still going strong. There are 1.8 million used cars sold in the Netherlands every year, which means the used car market is more than 4 times bigger than the new car market.

Another thing that drives the new car sales down is that most safety improvements were made about 10 years ago, so there's not the same incentive to buy a new car for safety reasons than 10 or 15 years ago.
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Old August 19th, 2014, 03:25 PM   #11132
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Another thing that drives the new car sales down is that most safety improvements were made about 10 years ago, so there's not the same incentive to buy a new car for safety reasons than 10 or 15 years ago.
A new batch of safety-relate innovations are coming though though: traction control, "all-enclosure" airbag systems, rear-end collision avoidance radar, holographic projections of controls/safety on windscreen.
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Old August 19th, 2014, 04:43 PM   #11133
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I think that is much better to buy for example car which is 3 years old,then a new car.Also one off topic question.
What car do you drive Chris ?
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Old August 21st, 2014, 10:29 PM   #11134
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kanadzie View Post
This is not right... used car import is a poor country thing (OK I admit I have bought used cars in foreign countries too myself ) but a wealthy country like NL should have essentially negligible used car import. Clearly the tax regime is causing strange imbalances in the market and should be reformed. I mean what is happening, Belgians return their company car lease and the B plates come off and NL plates go on? (surely making a bad comparison between Dutch and Belgians should be enough to make the politicians angry enough to change tax system )
The Dutch are rich but they are also savvy consumers and are interested in getting good value for money. They don't believe in wasting money if they already have a good car that still works well. The UK is less rich but a lot of people there like to buy a new car every 2 years as it is a status symbol to have a new car.

It might also be down to the number plate system. If you look at a Dutch number plate you can't automatically know if the car is new unless you know how the system works. In the UK it is obvious as the number plate shows the year of registration. For example, a car registered in the UK between March 2014 and August 2014 has a registration of the format XX14 XXX.

Dutch cars probably last longer also because they use them less for short journeys as they use bikes so much.

Presumably dealerships still make enough money selling used cars.

Last edited by radamfi; August 21st, 2014 at 10:58 PM.
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Old August 21st, 2014, 10:35 PM   #11135
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I think most dealerships make their money with overpriced repairs and parts.

You can easily save 50% on your maintenance cost if you go to a general garage instead of the official dealership.

Once I had to replace the timing belt and a periodical inspection & maintenance. The Renault dealer asked € 1100 for that job. A local garage did it for € 500.
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Old August 21st, 2014, 10:42 PM   #11136
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I read that is becoming more difficult as more and more parts have patented software or electronic components that cannot be tackled without proper license from manufacturer.
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Old August 22nd, 2014, 01:50 AM   #11137
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most such parts are like electronic computers, control modules, radio, instrument cluster that usually doesn't break anyway often the part is "married" to the car for anti-theft reasons and a new one would need to be married.

FWIW I fix my car myself
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Old August 22nd, 2014, 11:43 AM   #11138
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
I think most dealerships make their money with overpriced repairs and parts.

You can easily save 50% on your maintenance cost if you go to a general garage instead of the official dealership.

Once I had to replace the timing belt and a periodical inspection & maintenance. The Renault dealer asked € 1100 for that job. A local garage did it for € 500.
Not so bad price for actually doing anything. A year or two new Peugeot and the check up was € 700 and the dealer did actually nothing.

That is so everywhere though. I would say many garages have a hard time as well... On the other side, finding a decent one is always a problem. A "local" garage changed the winter wheels so "well" that after two weeks the ANWB had to tighten them up on the motorway parking.

The online offer apps are a good innovation though.
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Old August 22nd, 2014, 11:48 AM   #11139
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I read that is becoming more difficult as more and more parts have patented software or electronic components that cannot be tackled without proper license from manufacturer.
I think that the EU rules can have a say about how much that proper license might cost or be proprietary... so I would not bet on it.

It is not a secret though that the service incomes are major income channel for the car makers.
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Old August 22nd, 2014, 09:27 PM   #11140
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N302 Lelystad - Enkhuizen

The 'Houtribdijk', which is actually a dam, will be widened and strengthened under the 2nd flood protection programme. They have started procedures for this project, which is already fully funded.

Unfortunately, the study doesn't involve any improvements to N302, which is a two-lane, 100 km/h road. At one time there was talk about expanding it to a dual carriageway, but that may be over the top, given the traffic volumes of around 10,000 vehicles per day. But some passing lanes and a median barrier would definitely make it safer.

It's a pity that a simple solution like passing lanes (found all over the world) has not really made its way into Dutch traffic engineering dictionary yet. There's N50 but no other projects even considered it, despite many being good possibilities.

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