Record auto sales in January, despite Volkswagen sales drop

UK experiences best January new car sales record for 11 years

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has reported a record January for automotive registrations in the UK, despite figures showing a significant decrease in Volkswagen sales.
The figures released by SMMT for new car sales in January 2016 wear a very promising aspect for the automotive industry, despite Volkswagen sales dropping by a staggering 14 per cent in the UK, as a result of the diesel emissions scandal which exploded in Autumn last year.
The decrease in VW sales is now becoming apparent because car orders that were made around the time of the scandal – now being dubbed ‘Dieselgate’ – are just now being reflected in the car registration figures. Some of the other marques belonging to German auto manufacturer have also taken a hit, with Seat’s figures down by 25 per cent, and Skoda by 2.5 per cent.

Best January car sales for 11 years

Record January new car sales in the UK

However, this has not dampened the positive news; namely that the British automotive industry has recorded its best January since 2005. According to the report from The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, new car registrations rose to 169,678 in January 2016, a rise of 2.9 per cent on the previous year.
The figures show that petrol car sales rose by 3.7 per cent; diesel car sales rose by a modest 0.6 per cent; and most impressive of all, sales in alternative fuel vehicles increased by a whopping 32 per cent.
Mike Hawes, chief executive at the SMMT, commented: “January’s solid performance puts the new car sector in a good position to start the year … we expect a more stable 12 months ahead, broadly similar to 2015, which was, of course, a record year.”
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