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'Outrage' at government's new fleet of flash cars

Published: 6:08PM Tuesday February 15, 2011 Source: ONE News

The government has ordered 34 new BMWs to replace its current fleet which is just three years old.

Just a few weeks after Prime Minister John Key said that Kiwis "have to tighten their belts, we have to do the same", the government is to spend taxpayer money on the impressive limos.

The government said it would receive a bulk discount for the fleet of BMWs, which cost around $200,000 on the market but are so exclusive they are yet to arrive in New Zealand.

However, it would will not say how much public money will be used on BMW's flagship 7 Series cars, citing the excuse of commercial sensitivity.

The government's fleet of BMWs is used to transport ministers and dignitaries.

Finance Minister Bill English told ONE News that "we could go out and buy second-hand cars".

"But one way or another cars need to be maintained and you have to renew them eventually," he said.

The spending of public money on a new fleet has been slammed by the Green Party as an "outrage".

"Everyone else is having to tighten their belts and John Key is cutting staff, creating unemployment in order to apparently tighten the belt of government," Greens co-leader Metiria Turei said.

The editor of the car buyers' Dog and Lemon Guide said the BMW 7 Series was a "pre-credit crunch car".

"It's from an era of bloated stock brokers and dodgy loans and it looks completely out of place in this time in history," Clive Matthew-Wilson said.

The fleet change is expected to happen within the next few months.

The current fleet will be sold.

What do you think? Should the government be spending money on the cars? Have your say on the messageboard below.

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  • ljsmom70 said on 2011-02-22 @ 14:58 NZDT: Report abusive post

    What I dont understand is why wasn't this a big deal when under labor the Ministry of Justice bought a fleet of Skoda's, that are outragously expensive to maintain and do not run all that efficiently? And to boot that same department is now sacking several employees? I'd bet money the person responsible for the Skodas still has a job.

  • harriaway said on 2011-02-22 @ 12:49 NZDT: Report abusive post

    i see a number of these bmw s about auckland same colour and model be interesting to know the links the owner s have with key. mcully. lockwoodsmith, carter,smith,boag, shiply.williamson just to name a few of the corrupt institution we call national

  • harriaway said on 2011-02-22 @ 12:42 NZDT: Report abusive post

    i believe that the excusse off comercaully sensitve as resons for not disclosing price is a cover up for bribes that bmw would have offerd who ever arranged the purchase of said cars. come clean or take the next bus out key

  • TinHB said on 2011-02-22 @ 11:58 NZDT: Report abusive post

    This is really a profound argument, isnt it? Its all about a western government choosing to demonstrate its western chauvanism and western arrogance. Non-western nations may be enduring poverty and social upheaval worldwide, and non-westerners may be going through poverty on-shore in our own country. Yet our parliamentarians will be drivern around in western-defined silver designer label cars; to hell with costs! Might is right ... chauvanism such a sweet additive.

  • Gavin57 said on 2011-02-22 @ 10:42 NZDT: Report abusive post

    No, I think you are missing the point! The 730d BMW's in question are hugely fuel efficient at 5.5 l/100km (open road) and CO2 emissions of just 178 g/km, and by changing over at 3 years old maintain the investment costing the country a bare minimum. This is sound economic investment and a far better option than any dungery old Holden or Ford. Our public servants have served NZ well with this choice.

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