New car registrations fell by 23 per cent in October marking six months of consecutive car sales decline.
Latest SMMT figures reveal the steepest drop in sales for seventeen years, since 1991 and the last recession.
Luxury cars - particularly Bentleys – and people carriers have been hit very hard.
“October has proved another difficult month for the UK motor industry,” commented Paul Everitt, SMMT chief executive, “action is needed to help restore consumer confidence and encourage buyers back to showrooms.”
Everitt called on the government to drop interest rates in an effort to boost business.
The annual new car sales forecast has been reduced to 2.15 million - 10.7 per cent fewer vehicles than were sold in 2007.
Superminis are still selling strongly. This was the only sector of the market that saw any growth, with the Vauxhall Corsa October’s best-selling model.
Diesel market share also rose to a record high of 45.6 per cent during October as consumers look to buy more economical models with lower CO2 emissions.