New car market holding steady in February 2017

Published Date: 22nd Mar 2017

New Car sales held steady in Feb with a drop of just 0.3% compared to last year, The Vw Golf waves goodbye to Dieselgate

New car registrations stable in February and demand down just -0.3% to 83,115 units.

2017 performance is up by 1.8% to 257,679 registrations.

There was a Big boost for alternatively fuelled vehicles, as they saw a rise of 48.9% for February.

The UK new car market kept a steady line in February, dropping just -0.3%, according to figures released by SMMT. 83,115 new cars were registered in what is always one of the quietest months of the year ahead of the number plate change in March. Fleets drove the market, with 45,699 cars registered, up 3.3%, while private demand fell -4.4% to 36,018 units and business registrations declined -5.3% to 1,398.

Following January’s strong performance, buyers registered a record 3,308 alternatively fuelled vehicles (AFVs) in February, a 48.9% uplift on 2016, taking a 4.0% market share. This was partly driven by new AFV models going on sale, a result of major investments by manufacturers into cutting edge, fuel-efficient technology. Petrol registrations experienced an increase – rising 5.8% to 42,826 units – while demand for diesel cars fell -9.2% compared to the same month in 2016.

The Ford Fiesta continued its domination on the UK car market with 4,282 registrations, while the VW Golf was a firm 2nd with 2,949 new cars registered in the month of February. The Vauxhall Astra only just beat the Ford Focus to 3rd place with 2,170 and the BMW 3 Series made the list in 10th Place with 1,341 cars hitting the roads in February.

The Dominance of the VW Golf has been global in recent times, as it is now the bestselling car on the planet. The new VW Golf MK 7.5 has just been released too, so keep an eye on the VW Hatch creeping up and maybe even overtaking the UK favorite that is the Ford Fiesta.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said,

February is traditionally one of the quietest months of the year and a steady performance was expected following another year of record growth in 2016. We expect to see the market bounce back in March as buyers take advantage of the new ’17-plate, as well as the last chance to buy a car eligible for current lower VED rates before they change on 1 April.