UK new car sales rebound in May | Industry - Car News Jun 2018

INDUSTRY

10:59 Thursday 07 Jun 2018

Official figures showed a slight upturn in the UK new car market, with sales up by 3.4% in May.

A total of 192,649 new vehicles were registered last month, according to new figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders. The growth was driven by private sales – up by just over 10% - which offset a slight drop in demand from the business and fleet sectors.

No matter how modest the growth, it’s in stark contrast to twelve months ago where May 2017 saw an 8.5% slump in sales fuelled by changes to vehicle excise duty and the usual buyer hesitancy ahead of an upcoming general election.

Despite the improvement, overall UK new registrations have fallen by 6.8% so far this year, as the political uncertainty remains and low business and fleet confidence continues to hit those sectors.

Mike Hawes, Chief Executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, explained, “May’s growth, albeit on the back of large declines last year, is encouraging and suggests the market is now starting to return to a more natural running rate. To ensure long-term stability, we need to avoid any further disruption to the market, and this will require sustainable policies that give consumers and businesses the confidence to invest in the new cars that best suit their needs.  Fleet renewal is the fastest way to improve air quality and reduce CO2, and this applies to hybrid and plug-in technologies as well as the latest low emission petrol and diesels which, for many drivers, remain the right choice economically and environmentally.”

 

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