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Business

Buying Cars Abroad Can Save Germans Money

German car drivers can save substantial sums of money if they buy new cars in other EU countries, according to a European Commission report. The largest price disparity concerns the VW Passat, which is 39 percent more expensive in Germany than in Greece. "After the addition of value-added tax, a German consumer who buys his Passat in Greece can save €5,700 ($6,975)," the paper on pre-tax tax prices of the most-sold car models said. Within the EU, car prices are lowest in Denmark, Finland and Greece. The European Commission has concluded that pre-tax prices of cars within the EU are gradually reaching uniform levels. The body expects the trend to accelerate when, from October 2005, EU car dealers will be allowed to open showrooms throughout the bloc, not just in their home countries. Currently manufacturers define dealers' sales territories, which, for example, prevents Athens' dealers from selling Passats in Berlin and offering Germans Greek prices.