With the slumping market in the American auto industry, many car dealers (not to mention US politicians) may want to consider taking a second look at Israel in order to determine why the holy land is escaping the auto industry curse.
(Haaretz.com) Signs of an economic slowdown may be appearing all over, but they have not affected new car sales. In fact, Israelis are buying new vehicles at an ever growing pace. New car sales jumped 40% in the first quarter of 2008 to 61,100. March was a particularly good month with 21,553 new vehicles sold. This is a 57% rise over March of 2007. [...]
[R]ental companies bought new cars in preparation for a larger number of tourists starting with the Passover holidays, and the shekel's rise against the dollar and other currencies helped importers to increase the discounts they give to both private customers and leasing companies.
Lower vehicle taxes, which took effect this January, also encouraged purchases of new cars.
Note: Emphasis mine.
Lower taxes may have something to do with Israel's booming car industry, which has been improving since the beginning of this year.
But while some may credit a good economy or just a favorable environment, Israel may benefit from the fact that the car industry is looking to free itself from the burden of oil.
With upcoming breakthrough's in hydrogen power, not to mention electric flying cars, Israel may soon be positioning itself as a major player in the auto industry worldwide.
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