The completion of the first stage of CarWise, the code of practice set up by the Retail Motor Industry Federation (RMI), has been passed by the UK's Office of Fair Trading (OFT).

By completing stage one, the code has met the OFT's core criteria, which aim to ensure that it will be effective in promoting and safeguarding consumer interests. The second stage will test that it works in practice.

An RMI spokesman said: "We are already working towards OFT approval. We have done a great deal of work to make sure that our members are in compliance with this code ahead of schedule, to allow us to gain full approval as quickly as possible. Once the code has been approved, it will make a massive contribution towards raising standards in the retail motor sector."