Tucson top seller as new-car sales dip again

Hyundai Tucson

Eddie Cunningham

Sales of the in-demand crossover are ahead of other big names in the Top 10 best-sellers list. They include the Nissan Qashqai, Volkswagen Golf, Ford Focus, Skoda Octavia, Ford Fiesta, KIA Sportage, Toyota Yaris, Toyota Corolla and Renault Megane.

The new SIMI statistics also show there has been a drop in new-car registrations for July (start of the 172-reg period) as a result of persistent uncertainty about Brexit.

Registrations last month were down 7.14pc (27,748) with those for the first seven months of the year showing a 9.36pc decrease (to 118,925).

At a time of much talk about bans on diesels, a separate special SIMI Review highlights how hybrid vehicle sales increased from 1.6pc of the market in the first six months of 2016 to 3.2pc for the corresponding period this year.

It also reports on a “welcome rebalancing of the diesel/petrol shares” and says it is likely to continue towards equality between the two fuel types.

Registrations of new diesel cars fell from 71pc of the market in the first six months of 2016 to 66pc this year.

There was 1pc dip in new petrol car sales but they accounted for 30.2pc of sales during the first half of 2017.

Used imports continue to power ahead with 53,710 registered so far this year – compared with 37,932 for the corresponding period in 2016.

The Review claims nearly half (49pc) were five years or older, while the diesel share is 79pc.

“Sterling weakness and a scarcity of second hand cars due to the collapse in new car sales from 2009 onwards, were the main factors behind the strong increase in used imports,” it says.

It also found some motoring prices have fallen. The average price of a new car in May 2017 was 4.1pc lower than a year earlier, while the cost of motor insurance in May 2017 was down 8.4pc, it says.

Economist Jim Power, author of the Review, said: “As we move into the second half of the year, all of the factors that influenced the motor trade in the first half will remain relevant.

“Economic growth will be supportive, but financial pressures on consumers and the uncertainty around Brexit are likely to continue to weigh on big-ticket items such as new cars.

“At the same time, imported used cars will remain popular. For the full year, the likelihood is that new car registrations will be 10pc down on last year. This would translate into total new car registrations for the year of 132,000.”

Online Editors

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