Currently reading: 2011 car sales drop below 2m
December registrations in; sales outstrip forecasts but are lower than in 2010

Less than two million cars were registered in 2011 it has been confirmed - 4.4 per cent less than in 2010.

Registrations in December fell by 3.7 per cent to 119,188 cars, meaning the market was down 1.8 per cent in the final three months of the year.

However, sales were ahead of the 1.92 million forecast at the start of the year, and notably diesel and alternatively fuelled cars both took record market shares.

Average new car CO2 emissions also fell to a new low of 138.1g/km in 2011, down 4.2 per cent on the 2010 level.

The market is forecast to be broadly stable in 2012, with firmer recovery expected in 2013.

"Weak economic growth will make trading conditions tough in 2012, but record numbers of new and updated models, significantly improved fuel efficiency and exciting new technologies will help to encourage consumers into showrooms," said Paul Everitt, SMMT chief executive.

"Business and consumer confidence will be the key to a successful year, so it will be important that government delivers on its growth strategy and helps to resolve instability in the Euro Zone."

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ronmcdonald 8 January 2012

Re: 2011 car sales drop below 2m

Los Angeles wrote:

Ron, I thought I read car sales in Scotland had risen? Strange coincidence.

LA, I really am struggling with these reports of declining cars sales and a weakening economy.

There are the usual obvious signs that all is not right, but if we were to take just motoring as the guiding factor, you'd think we live in a boom period up here.

I do a lot of walking / running / cycling and if I'm on my own I sometimes play a game to pass the time - count how many cars that pass by are less than a year old. What's the percentage of cars that pass by that are either 60, 11, 61 reg? You wouldn't believe it but I can't get to double figures! In my area of Central Scotland I reckon somewhere in the region of 1 in 8 cars that pass by are a year old or less.

It's also interesting to see just how much buying habits have changed. Canny Scots used to love their Japanese motors - today I see new Qashqui, Juke (lots of them! I was so wrong about the Juke), Mazda 2 and Eygo/Yaris - that's about it from Japan. Kia's and Hyundai's are really popular and I'm seeing lot more of the new Focus. Funnily enough, there are loads of 11 plate old Focus's around.

I realise I stay in a pretty affluent area but it's the amount of new Audi's around here that blows me away - they definitely outsell BMW. The whole VW range is another big seller but it's the number of new Land Rovers which is the most startling of all. Every third Land Rover that passes by seems to be under a year old.

Recession? What recession.

Update for Prodigy - even though I live near a MG dealership I STILL haven't seen a private MG on the roads in the past year (plenty of demos). Just checked on MG website to see if there are any other dealerships in Scotland that have sprung up... OMG, it looks like they've all disappeared! Morrisons in the ONLY MG dealership left in the whole of Scotland! The next nearest is in Newcastle, then you have to go all the way down to Harrogate for the next! Not sure if the garages have folded or have just given up their MG franchise but it's not looking good for MG North of Manchester and certainly explains why I haven't seen any on the road.

ronmcdonald 7 January 2012

Re: 2011 car sales drop below 2m

sierra wrote:

The figure left out from the article - electric cars registered in December - 25.

COTY anybody?

COTY? Well you could argue the introduction of the Leaf has tripled sales of electrics cars from last year (8 sold in Dec 2010).

artill 6 January 2012

Re: 2011 car sales drop below 2m

sierra wrote:
electric cars registered in December - 25

is that 25, or minus 25. i imagined 25 disapointed owners taking them back after they ran out of electricity well short of the claimed range