New vehicle sales drop 12% in October

07 November, 2017, 01:08 | Author: Lester Mason
  • Diesel vs petrol Diesel sales are down 29.9% in a year with drivers spooked by toxin tax punishments

The new auto market has been declining for a while now, and the new vehicle registration figures for October 2017 - just released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) - show the decline, especially for diesel cars, continuing.

United Kingdom new auto market sees a sharp drop with demand falling 12% in October as confidence continues to ebb among buyers.

Offsetting the decline in diesel auto registrations, the figures published by the SMMT indicate that demand for alternatively fuelled vehicles such as battery electric cars have continued to rise.

"Declining business and consumer confidence is undoubtedly affecting demand in the new auto market but this is being compounded by confusion over government policy on diesel", said Mike Hawes, the SMMT's chief executive. The SMMT has now called on the government to reassure consumers that "the latest, low emission diesel cars will not face any bans or restrictions".

This aligns with SMMT's latest forecast for 2017, published last week, with the market expected to end the year on 2.565 million units - a -4.7 per cent decline.

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Falling consumer confidence largely caused by uncertainty surrounding the future of diesel has been blamed for the recent fall in registrations.

"Despite registrations of alternatively fuelled vehicles rising and a slight uplift in sales of petrol cars, the overall market was down by more than 12% last month as these efforts failed to balance out diesel's sharp decline". Sales of diesels were once again down massively - seeing a 30 per cent decline. "Modern Euro 6 diesel cars can not be compared to older diesel models".

Vehicle sales are also likely to be hampered by mounting pressure to restrict auto finance deals and unsecured consumer credit, Archer said, with the Bank of England having shown mounting concern and called for a more responsible approach, particularly due to concerns over the resale value of cars at the end of Personal Contract Purchase (PCP) deals.

However, AFV's increasing market share couldn't offset the decline in diesel registrations, which fell by -29.9% in October - the most noticeable drop yet. According to the data, alternatively fuelled vehicle registrations were up 36.9% compared to 2016, with 8,244 cars having been registered during the month.

"Whilst we welcome the ongoing growth in popularity of electric vehicles, we are still at least five years away from them taking a material market share and so traditional fuel types will have a significant role to play for many years to come".

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