Market rose 23.1% last month, with record growth for hybrid and plug-in models after a year-long slump
5 September 2018

The UK car market enjoyed a substantial boost in August, with year-on-year increases of 23.1%, according to data from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).

A total of 94,094 new cars were registered in August, traditionally one of the year’s quietest months for sales. The most dramatic sector increase was for alternatively fuelled vehicles, including hybrids and fully electric models, which nearly doubled over the same period in 2017, recording 88.7% year-on-year growth. 

Overall, the car market in western Europe saw growth of around 20% on average last month. The UK’s figure for August is the best since at least 2002, according to the data. However, SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes warned against viewing the market as recovering fully from 2018’s previous slump.

He said: “Given August is always a small month for new-car registrations ahead of the important plate-change month of September, it would be wrong to view the market as booming. Indeed, this past month has seen significant variances as regulatory changes have disrupted some supplies.” 

Much of the dramatic surge in vehicle registrations can be attributed to the introduction of new WLTP (World harmonised Light vehicles Test Procedure) regulations, which determine that all cars manufactured after 1 September this year must have been put under a stricter emissions testing regime.

Vehicles manufactured under the old NEDC testing rules had to be registered by 31 August. As a result, car makers have been registering cars in bulk before the new rules coming into place. This stock can still be sold on forecourts for another year.

The Ford Fiesta retains the top spot for sales, with 4552 registered. Regular challengers such as the Volkswagen Golf, BMW 3 Series and Nissan Qashqai remain in the top 10 too. New entrants also feature, such as the Suzuki Swift and Honda Jazz

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An exceptional number of discount deals in the past month is another reason cited for the sharp increase. It comes after several months of market unrest, which saw UK car registrations down 6.3%. June witnessed the lowest number of new cars registered since 2014, although a small amount of growth was measured in June.

Much of this year’s car market issues in Europe is due to an ongoing slump in demand for diesel, driven by uncertainty over the fuel’s future and fears of increased taxation to come. 

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14

5 September 2018

Not sure how they're going to down play this increase

typos1 - Just can’t respect opinion

5 September 2018
xxxx wrote:

Not sure how they're going to down play this increase

Dont worry, Septembers figures will probably be really bad due to the supply of many WLTP stock, and all these pre reg cars to be sold, but the SMMT can get back to saying that is Brexit, diesel, or some other made up issue they want to scare munger about.

5 September 2018
xxxx wrote:

Not sure how they're going to down play this increase

 

It’s an anomaly caused by new WLTP regs, as made clear in the story.

Surprisingly enough, jingoistic flag-waving is not able to compensate for leaving the world’s wealthiest trading bloc... what a surprise, eh?!

5 September 2018

Oh just quit it will you ;)

scrap wrote:

xxxx wrote:

Not sure how they're going to down play this increase

 

It’s an anomaly caused by new WLTP regs, as made clear in the story.

Surprisingly enough, jingoistic flag-waving is not able to compensate for leaving the world’s wealthiest trading bloc... what a surprise, eh?!

5 September 2018

Whilst I understand about WLTP affecting numbers of pre-registered cars I got the following from vehicles.ie and Global Fleet

Ready: PSA (including Vauxhall, citroen etc), all the Ford the big sellers, BMW, Toyota, Volvo, Dacia, KIA, JEEP, Hyundai, Honda, Nissan, Renault, Suzuki, Alfa.

Badly affected: VAG

Not Sure about: JLR

Yes the increase is suspect but what gets me about the SMMT is they get real glummy when months stats point downwards and poo-poo monthly sales stats when they go up. 

 

typos1 - Just can’t respect opinion

5 September 2018

Meant gloomy not glummy.

typos1 - Just can’t respect opinion

5 September 2018
xxxx wrote:

Whilst I understand about WLTP affecting numbers of pre-registered cars I got the following from vehicles.ie and Global Fleet

Ready: PSA (including Vauxhall, citroen etc), all the Ford the big sellers, BMW, Toyota, Volvo, Dacia, KIA, JEEP, Hyundai, Honda, Nissan, Renault, Suzuki, Alfa.

Badly affected: VAG

Not Sure about: JLR

Yes the increase is suspect but what gets me about the SMMT is they get real glummy when months stats point downwards and poo-poo monthly sales stats when they go up. 

They may well be ready but some of the dealers/brokers I've spoken to recently, stock or availability is either very low or non-existent.  Kia/Hyundia have alot of vehilces dockside (Korea) or in shipping.  Dacia have plenty of 1.6 petrol Dusters in stock or available as build slots, though the factory is not commiting to diesel production and are currently saying maybe Feb/March 2019.  Renault cannot give a delivery date for Diesel Meagne Tourers and I know Alfa are only producing one variant of the Giulia and no Stelvio's or Giulietta's at the moment.

5 September 2018

It would be interesting if the pre-registered models  could be separated out. Clearly there are some bargains for those prepared to buy cars with the "old" 18-regitration and which have  not been tested to the latest protocol!

5 September 2018
LP in Brighton wrote:

It would be interesting if the pre-registered models  could be separated out. Clearly there are some bargains for those prepared to buy cars with the "old" 18-regitration and which have  not been tested to the latest protocol!

Captive sales (pre-reg) are recorded in the data, so every manufacturer (& anyone else with sight of the SMMT figures) will see how many of each rivals' reg's are down to WLTP & emissions regulations.

BMW, for example, have been spanking out a small number of high-powered petrol models for the last few months (crazy-priced 440i M, anyone?) in order to beat the deadline.

A large anomaly like this in a low-volume month is usually a sign of trouble ahead, at least for the least prepared.

5 September 2018
Reverend Rev wrote:

LP in Brighton wrote:

It would be interesting if the pre-registered models  could be separated out. Clearly there are some bargains for those prepared to buy cars with the "old" 18-regitration and which have  not been tested to the latest protocol!

Captive sales (pre-reg) are recorded in the data, so every manufacturer (& anyone else with sight of the SMMT figures) will see how many of each rivals' reg's are down to WLTP & the least prepared.

How do manufacturers know each other pre-reg figures using SMMT stats? Could you tell us how many FORD pre-recorded in August then?

typos1 - Just can’t respect opinion

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