Rising by 2.9 percent, an impressive 169,678 new cars were registered in the first month of 2016. Of these sales, 73,000 were from private buyers, another promising sign for the automobile industry as it is leaps 8.2 percent from the Previous year and stands as the highest share of private registrations since 2004. Business buyers weren’t far behind though, with sales from their market surging five percent. The promising figures for January 2016 follow previous reports that 2015 was a year for the record books in the automotive world. The BBC have estimated that around 2.63 million new vehicles were registered in 2015, an increase six percent on the previous year. Not only did this mark the fourth consecutive year of growth in the industry, but it also set a record for car sales in the UK. The previous record for sales in Britain was made some twelve years earlier in 2003 when 2.58 million new cars were sold.
The news comes as a late Christmas gift in particular for Ford, who have retained the prestigious title of owning the ‘best-selling car’ with the Ford Fiesta. Selling an estimated 8,500 units this January, the Fiesta outsold rivals like Vauxhall’s Corsa by over 4000 sales. Also relishing the news are sellers, and fans, of alternatively fuelled cars as a reported 6,075 of these vehicles were newly registered on Britain’s roads this January, rising by nearly a third from the previous year which saw sales of around 4,500. Petrol hybrids proved the most in demand for environmentally aware British drivers with a reported forty four percent increase in sales. Flashing the cash and saving the planet; pat yourselves on the back, you great Britons.
Announcing the latest data, Mike Hawes, Chief Executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders, said: “January’s solid performance puts the new car sector in a good position to start the year. Providing consumer confidence remains strong, we expect a more stable 12 months ahead, broadly similar to 2015 which was, of course, a record year.” So there you have it – turns out we are tremendous fans of the ‘new car smell’ in this country.