Error parsing XSLT file: \xslt\FacebookOpenGraph.xslt New car market sees monthly decline
Cookies on Businesscar

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on the Business Car website. However, if you would like to, you can change your cookies at any time

BusinessCar magazine website email Awards mobile

The start point for the best source of fleet information

New car market sees monthly decline

Date: 05 June 2019   |   Author: Sean Keywood

UK new car registrations were down by 4.6% year-on-year in May, according to figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).

The month's data includes a 3% decline in fleet registrations, although this was a stronger showing than the private sector, which was down by 5%.

Business sales - to firms with fewer than 25 vehicles - were down by 29%, although these make up only 2.1% of the overall market. 

The continued decline in diesel car sales showing no signs of ending, as these were down by 18.3% - the 26th consecutive monthly drop.

The SMMT puts this down to ongoing anti-diesel sentiment and the imminent widespread adoption of low emission zones, although it says the latest diesel cars are cleaner than ever and will not face charges or restrictions anywhere in the UK. 

There was a 1% increase in petrol car registrations, which made up more than 65% of the overall market. Meanwhile demand for alternatively fuelled vehicles was up by 11.7%, taking them to a 6.6% market share.

Within the latter sector, there was a 34.6% increase in conventional hybrid registrations, an 81.1% increase in pure electric car registrations (though these still only account for 1.1% of the overall market), but a 40.6% drop in plug-in hybrid registrations.

SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes said: "Confusing policy messages and changes to incentives continue to affect consumer and business confidence, causing drivers to keep hold of their older, more polluting vehicles for longer. 

"New cars are safer, cleaner and more advanced than ever and, with sophisticated safety, efficiency and comfort features as well as a host of attractive deals on offer, there has never been a better time to invest in a new car." 

Perennial market leader the Ford Fiesta was again the UK's best selling car in May with 6,710 registrations, ahead of the second-placed Ford Focus with 5,556.

The Volkswagen Golf was the third most popular model with 4,655 registrations, and the top five was completed by the Vauxhall Corsa (3,993) and the Mercedes-Benz A-Class (3,735).