Registrations drop 6.7% compared with October last year, but one in 10 models were either electric or hybrid
5 November 2019

The new car market has continued a downward trend with a significant decline in October, according to figures published today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders. 

Compared with the same month in 2018, 10,348 fewer cars were registered – a 6.7% decline. The SMMT claims the figures reflect “a tough environment for business and consumers as economic and political uncertainty continued to impact confidence”.

James Fairclough, CEO of AA Cars, released a statement saying the results are “incredibly disappointing”. 

It continued: “Hopes had been high that September’s small jump in momentum, sparked by new registration plates, would mark a turning point. A 6.7% fall in sales is surprisingly sharp despite dealerships’ tireless efforts to attract buyers to forecourts.” 

However, positive news came as the SMMT revealed that almost one in 10 (9.9%) of cars registered were in the ‘alternatively fuelled’ category, meaning hybrid or battery electric, which is a new record.

The latter was up by 151.8% over the same period in 2018, yet wasn’t enough to cover for a 28.3% decline in diesel car sales. Overall, the market has declined by 2.9% to date this year, which SMMT chief Mike Hawes acknowledges is the eighth month of decline and shows the market is “in need of an injection of confidence”. 

He added: “Whether the general election delivers a ‘bounce’ to the economy remains to be seen but, with attractive deals and an ever-greater choice of low, ultra-low and zero emission models arriving in the UK’s showrooms, consumers have every incentive to consider buying a new car.”

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Comments
15

5 November 2019

Well one incentive not there for me is value for money! Does SMMT chief Mike Hawes live on the same planet as normal people?!Car prices have gone completely bonkers in recent times. With small cars like the Corsa now costing almost £20k in basic spec, that's the real reason people are not buying so many new cars any more!

 

FM8

5 November 2019
gavsmit wrote:

Well one incentive not there for me is value for money! Does SMMT chief Mike Hawes live on the same planet as normal people?!Car prices have gone completely bonkers in recent times. With small cars like the Corsa now costing almost £20k in basic spec, that's the real reason people are not buying so many new cars any more!

 

And yet you can still get in a Corsa for around £150 a month with less than a grand deposit. Ain't that bonkers.

5 November 2019

And ain't it bonkers that for that same £150 a month I can tax, MOT, insure, fuel, service and maintain my 23 year old Fiesta. Why would I want to 'upgrade' to a new car where £150 a month is merely the price of entry and not the total monthly cost? That would be bonkers.

FM8

5 November 2019
speedhunter92 wrote:

And ain't it bonkers that for that same £150 a month I can tax, MOT, insure, fuel, service and maintain my 23 year old Fiesta. Why would I want to 'upgrade' to a new car where £150 a month is merely the price of entry and not the total monthly cost? That would be bonkers.

That's ones choice. You could debate for ever over the relative merits of new Vs 2nd hand, buying new and keeping for ever, ect. List prices for most new cars a largely an irrelevance to the vast majority of those who choose an new car every 2/3 years, as most are leased in one form or another. The fact is, if you do go for new and you're not hung up on actually owning a car you can get yourself into something in the 20-30k price bracket for well under 200 a month with very little deposit.

5 November 2019
gavsmit wrote:

Well one incentive not there for me is value for money! Does SMMT chief Mike Hawes live on the same planet as normal people?!Car prices have gone completely bonkers in recent times. With small cars like the Corsa now costing almost £20k in basic spec, that's the real reason people are not buying so many new cars any more!

 

I agree. And soon, apparently, small 'cheap' economical cars like the Corsa will be priced out of the market by steps taken to improve the environment. Then new car sales will really fall!   

289

5 November 2019

...." the market needs an injection of confidence"

 

I think not....the market would be better served with an injection of realism!

Every year all the brands come up with crazy new year sales predictions, which iaal added up are at least 30% greater than the real market size. Hence the crazy Pre-reg numbers fleet support and PCP underwriting.

Get real guys!

5 November 2019
People aren't buying new cars because they don't like what they are being offered.

5 November 2019
eseaton wrote:

People aren't buying new cars because they don't like what they are being offered.

I agree. The bland sea of SUVs is just killing people's interest in cars altogether.

289

5 November 2019

.... "The bland sea of SUV's is just killing peoples interest in cars"

 

Really Catnip....thats why SUV's have 40% of the market by far the biggest selling segment then!

5 November 2019
Maybe people dont want to be left without the ability to drive into city centers in a few years. There are currently 3-4 credible EVs on the market, all selling at capacity..

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