Diesel worries and the rush to beat car tax changes blamed for poor sales
According to industry figures, new car registrations for the month of April fell by almost 20%, which is in stark contrast to the following month which boasted record breaking sales.
The decline in sales for April could be down to diesel worries and the rush to beat car tax changes, which came into force on April 1.
A total of 152,076 brand new 17-plate vehicles were registered in April, reported the Society of Motor manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) – 19.8% down on the same period last year.
Many motorists brought forward their purchasing plans as a result of the new changes, plus diesel sales plummeted by 27.3% following the Government’s push to reduce the UK’s emissions output, which seems to have put buyers off.
The new figures revealed that demand had fallen widespread, with new registrations by businesses and fleets, as well as private buyers falling at a rate of 21%, 12% and 28% respectively.
Sales of petrol and alternatively fuelled motors also declined along with diesel vehicles.
Alternative fuel vehicle sales dropped for the first time in almost 4 years by 1.3%, which could be down to the fact that hybrids and plug-in hybrids are no longer free to tax following the new changes. Unleaded car sales fell by 13.1 per cent.
The decline in sales for April follow a record breaking month, which saw the country’s UK car market grow by 8.4%. In total, 562,337 new cars were registered in March – over three times the sales in April. March was indeed the biggest month for new car registrations since records began.
Despite the revelation that new cars sales declined last month, overall new car registrations for 2017 to date shows 972,092 sales – 1.1% higher than at the same time last year.
The SMMT believes the decline in sales for April was mostly down to consumers trying to beat the new car tax changes, which came into force on April 1.
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