The UK car market continued to buck the European downturn with growth of 11.3% in November, according to data released by the SMMT.
UK new car registrations rose 11.3% to 149,191 units in November, on the back of increased private demand. The UK new car market has grown 5.4% to 1,921,052 units during the January-November period and the SMMT said that the positive performance over the year-to-date puts the full year market on track to be the best since 2008.
The UK is also now the second largest new car market in Europe, following growth in the UK over the last 10 months and a drop in demand in the other big markets.
"New car registrations rose 11.3% in November, positioning the UK new car market as the second largest in Europe," said Paul Everitt, SMMT Chief Executive. "The upward trend has been driven by private retail customers. The outlook for 2013 remains challenging, but vehicle manufacturers and their dealers will continue to work hard to attract motorists to their showrooms and deliver outstanding value."
The strong performance of the private retail side of the market will lead to speculation that the figures are being boosted by dealer pre-registrations, assisted by some OEMs looking for higher UK volumes in the face of extraordinarily weak demand on the European continent.
The SMMT also acknowledged that 'growth is likely to be market specific, boosted by attractive offers and new, innovative models offering significant fuel efficiency and cost savings'.
David Raistrick, UK automotive leader at Deloitte said: “The resilient UK new car market continues to defy the downward pull of the Eurozone and its debt problems. It is remarkable that we have seen nine consecutive months of growth being reported against 2011, especially as our European partners are forecasting further contraction in their markets during 2013. Even the normally robust German market is being forecast to contract by over 3% next year, which would be its second worst year for new car sales in the last two decades. In a similar manner, the French figures currently show sales declining by nearly 15% on last year and the lowest sales since 1997.
“There is no doubt that the current levels of manufacturer pre-registrations have helped support UK new sales, but this is not the full story. Analysis by Deloitte’s automotive research unit indicates that the UK new car market has fared significantly better than each of the European markets. The question is whether the UK market will continue its current performance into 2013.”
Registrations by private buyers increased by more than a fifth in November and by 12.9% over the year-to-date.
The Ford Focus was the best-selling new car in November, but the Ford Fiesta has held the top position over the year-to-date.
SMMT’s full year 2012 car market forecast of 2.013m units, as fixed in October, looks set to be bettered. At that time the 2013 market was expected to show little net change, at 2.015m units. SMMT will review its forecast in January, after publication of full year data.
Quarterly and other results to the thirty-oneth of March continued to dribble in this week so let's start by hoisting the Union Jack, drum roll, trumpet blast, and highlight Jaguar Land Rover's 11% fu...
More read-it-and-weep news for struggling European rivals from Volkswagen group this week as it chalked up another little milestone - selling over 3m vehicles in the first four months of a year....
Not long ago the subcompact market in Brazil was regarded as niche and far from attractive to automakers. Current offerings are all imports like the Fiat 500 (from Mexico under the free trade agreeme...
Ford's CGT union in France has welcomed news the automaker is to invest EUR120m (US$155m) into its Blanquefort transmissions plant near Bordeaux safeguarding 1,000 jobs....
Tata Motors' UK luxury car unit Jaguar Land Rover booked record sales, revenues and pre-tax profit for the full fiscal year to 31 March, 2013....
Mazda Motor Europe on Wednesday (29 May) announced the sudden death last week of CFO Matthew Tomilo, a former Ford executive....
- ANALYSIS - Jaguar takes on Porsche with F-PACE
- THE WEEK THAT WAS - platforms to go to
- Peugeot steps up a gear with new 3008
- Delphi Powertrain VP on compliance - Q&A
- General Motors' platform strategy decoded
- Peugeot reveals revamped 3008 compact SUV
- Tesla chooses Mando for autonomous technology
- US and UK motorists divided on driverless cars
- Ford recalls 271,000 F-150s for brake job
- Romanian PM asks Ford for more