Currently reading: New car sales rise again in April
The UK's new car market remains buoyant in April, helping to boost sales both at home and in the European Union

The UK's new car market grew by over eight per cent last month, according to new figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). 

A total of 176,820 vehicles were registered in April, down significantly from 464,824 cars registered in March. The SMMT has again increased its forecast for this year, from 2.3 million new car registrations to over 2.4m. The group says sales have continued to rise for the 26th consecutive month thanks to improving wages and falling inflation.

SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes said: "After the bumper plate-change month of March, the UK car market returned to more modest but still positive growth in April."

Diesel registrations continue to rise sharply and now represent 51.4 per cent of the total market, up from 50.3 per cent last year. Petrol models accounted for 46.9 per cent of sales, while alternatively fuelled cars occupy just 1.7 per cent of the market, with 2949 cars registered last month.

Big winners continue to be Ford's Fiesta and Focus models, followed by the Volkswagen Golf and Vauxhall Corsa. Sales of Nissan's Qashqai rose sharply last month, thanks to interest in the new model. In the year to date, the Fiesta occupies the top spot with some 49,490 units registered, followed by the Focus and Corsa.

Outside the UK, new car registrations in the EU have risen for the seventh consecutive month to March this year, with a total of 3.25m cars registered in the first quarter of 2014. The UK is now the second-largest market for new cars in the EU, and contributed to almost a third of first-quarter registrations this year.

UK's best-selling cars in April 2014

1 Ford Fiesta 10,250 units registered

2 Ford Focus 6772

3 Volkswagen Golf 5302

4 Vauxhall Corsa 3949

5 Audi A3 3754

6 Nissan Qashqai 3753

7 Vauxhall Astra 3562

8 Volkswagen Polo 3449

9 Nissan Juke 3053

10 Fiat 500 2928

Get the latest car news, reviews and galleries from Autocar direct to your inbox every week. Enter your email address below:

Back to top

Join the debate

Add a comment…
Ollieo 7 May 2014

I have just downloaded the

I have just downloaded the spreadsheet and it makes for interesting reading... The one thing that struck me most was the poor performance of Chevrolet - 85 cars sold last month! Same as SsangYong and less than Abarth, MG and Chrysler.

I know they are winding down, but not until end of 2015 - that's a 92% drop on the same month last year! Also Proton has sold 1 car in 2014 so far (having sold 15 cars in 2013!!)... how can they possibly afford to maintain that kind of performance?

Interested to see that MG is picking up slowly... 220 cars sold last month, putting it ahead of Subaru, Chrysler, Chevrolet and Jeep.

xxxx 7 May 2014


Morning to you to, many thanks for that (I presume it’s model by model and not the maufacturers share of the market). Will eview tonight.
Lewis Kingston 7 May 2014

RE: Full list

Morning xxxx. You can access the full list and details here: Click on the month you're interested in and at the bottom of the page there's a link to download the complete results.
xxxx 7 May 2014


Hi, unless I'm reading it wrong it's as I thought and is just the manufacturers figures not the car list. Thanks anyway. Anyone know why the SMMT restrict access to what should be public figures