Alan Lyons has been elected president of the Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI) at the organisation's 44th AGM, held at Croke Park.

Mr Lyons succeeds Gerry Caffrey and his term will be for one year.

After qualifying as a chartered accountant and working in the agri food business, Mr Lyons joined the family business Auto Diesel Electric in 1983.

The new president addressed delegates and spoke about the difficulties in the aftermarket sector, "There is a double blow when new car sales fall; not only does car sales' activity reduce but there are fewer cars to service and repair. Allied to this is a flourishing black market, which always occurs when incomes fall and the motor industry is a prime example of that.

Mr Lyons highlighted the need for members to get back to basics; "SIMI members have the highest qualified technicians in the industry and undoubtedly we provide the highest quality of service."

SIMI launched SIMI APR (Autosure Professional Register) last week to raise awareness of the importance for motorists to have their vehicles serviced when they should be and only in garages which are fully qualified to do so.