German car makers have said that the UK will have to accept the free movement of EU citizens in return for access to the single market.
Matthias Wissmann, from the German Automotive Industry Association, said the UK would have to accept the “bitter pill” of free movement.
Restricting access to the UK was a key promise of the Leave campaign.
Leave campaigners also argued that, to help car exports, Germany would push for a generous trade deal with the UK.
However the German car makers appear to be taking a tough line.
“We don’t like to build new barriers… but any bid to secure full access to the single market would necessarily come with conditions. Everyone who negotiates on the British side will understand that,” Mr Wissmann said.
“If you want full access to the market, that comes necessarily with the free movement of people. That’s the bitter pill the Brexiteers have to accept,” he added.
Responding to those comments, Conservative MP John Redwood said: “I don’t think he [Mr Wissman] speaks for the German government
“We’ve heard Mrs Merkel take a fairly emollient line. She is only too well aware that German industry is saying to her: ‘For goodness sake do not end up with tariffs and barriers in the way of our very substantial exports to the United Kingdom market.'”
Mr Redwood thinks that the UK would get a much better deal then Norway and Switzerland who are outside the European Union, because the UK is a “very heavy net importer”.