UK ‘new car’ market falls by 15.7 percent in March 2018
by Helen Jackson |
posted 12 April 2018
According to figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), the UK new car market fell by 15.7% in March. Even so, it was still the fourth biggest March ever for the sector.
Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, commented:
“March’s decline is not unexpected given the huge surge in registrations in the same month last year. Despite this, the market itself is relatively high with the underlying factors in terms of consumer choice, finance availability and cost of ownership all highly competitive.”
March 2017 was the biggest month ever for new car registrations, as buyers seized the chance to purchase cars before new Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) rates came into force in April last year. However, registrations are still running at a historically high level and last month’s market was the fourth biggest March on record.
It seems that economic and political uncertainty and confusion over air quality plans continued to affect confidence, resulting in declines across all sales types. For example, the fall in diesel demand continues, down by 37.2% compared to same month last year.
Mike Hawes acknowledges that consumer and business confidence has taken a knock in recent months. He wants to see the right economic conditions created for all types of consumers to have the confidence to buy new vehicles.
“All technologies, regardless of fuel type, have a role to play in helping improve air quality whilst meeting our climate change targets, so government must do more to encourage consumers to buy new vehicles rather than hang onto their older, more polluting vehicles.”
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