Currently reading: UK's new car sales rise again
Sales up again in May - but the industry is now expected to head into decline

The UK’s new car registrations rose for the 11th consecutive month in May- but industry body the SMMT believes the market will now head into decline.

Scrappage ended earlier this year and the final few cars purchased under the scheme were registered in May. The ending of this scheme, coupled with continued economic uncertainty, is expected to see car sales in 2010 end up lower than in 2009.

May’s registrations were up 13.5 per cent on the same month last year; 153,095 units in total were registered in the month.

SMMT chief executive Paul Everitt is now calling on the new coalition government to deliver a strong emergency budget to help fend off the expected decline in the new car industry.

“May was another good month for the UK new car market, although we expect the coming months to be extremely challenging,” he said. “It is essential that the upcoming emergency budget promotes consumer and business confidence to maintain economic recovery.”

The Ford Focus was the UK’s best-selling car in May ahead of the Vauxhall Astra and Ford Fiesta.

Top 10 cars sold in May

1. Ford Focus - 7163 units registered2. Vauxhall Astra – 67343. Ford Fiesta – 66194. Vauxhall Corsa -59505. VW Golf – 43146. BMW 3-series – 37327. VW Polo – 37218. Mini - 34459. Nissan Qashqai – 335910. Audi A3- 3093


Latest business news

99 bmw ix vs mercedes eqs 2022 lead 0 0
From 2024, 22% of a car maker's sales must be BEVs – or it faces a £15,000 fine for every car that does not conform
Editor's letter: EV sales must increase by 50% in 2024 – how?
93 ev charger suppliers under scrutiny podpoint
PodPoint recently switched focus from fast public devices to home and workplace charging
EV charger companies switch tactics in search for elusive profits
Volvo car charging
From 2024, car makers will need to show that 45% of an EV's value originated in the UK or EU to remain tariff-free
EU proposes three-year delay to UK rules of origin tariffs
geneva motor show floor 2018
The Geneva motor show hasn't been held since 2019, due to the pandemic and its after-effects
Geneva motor show 2024: MG confirmed and BYD likely

Read our review

Car review

Can the Ford Focus capture the hearts and minds of hatchback buyers, or have its traditional rivals managed to perfect the formula?

Join the debate

Add a comment…
andrepaul999 9 June 2010

Re: UK's new car sales rise again

Problem is the figures are compared to 2009 which was one of the worst on record.

It will be interesting to see what happens for the rest of this year, especially if we are heading for the dreaded double dip

Lee23404 7 June 2010

Re: UK's new car sales rise again

CambsBill wrote:
it's great to see the British-built Astra doing so well in May -

It is good to see the Astra doing quite well but shouldn't it be doing better against the now very old Focus. Both are fleet/company car specials and there are some real give away deals on the Astra at the moment.

Just an observation but 5 of the top 10 (including the BMW Mini) are German. In fact, aren't most Focuses made there too? Not good for the balance of trade deficit is it.

CambsBill 7 June 2010

Re: UK's new car sales rise again

nicksheele wrote:


Now I know you're Horse'n'cart - that good old habit of supplying links to stories that go against your own point (YoY sales up 26%, UK built sales up 52.1% so, errr, imports presumably didn't do so well).

Looking at the silver lining rather than always focussing on the cloud, it's great to see the British-built Astra doing so well in May - it's a very good car and long may it continue!