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Irish Motor Industry Review June 2020

Registrations of new cars continued to fall in June in Ireland.

Registrations of new cars continued to fall in June in Ireland, but the speed of the plummet abated a little, and the industry now hopes that the July 202-registration period gives it a glimmer of hope.

Overall car registrations down by 34.5 per cent

Registrations in June were down by 28 per cent compared to the same month last year - 1,011 registrations compared to 1,408 in 2019. That means that overall registrations are down by 34.5 per cent for the year to date - 52,891 registrations compared to 80,758 this time last year.

Light commercial registrations - vans, basically - were also down, by 24 per cent for June, and 30.9 per cent for the year to date. Heavy goods vehicles fell by a massive 67 per cent in June, and are down by 32 per cent for the year to date.

Used car imports are also falling, and at a steeper rate than the overall market. They fell by 47 per cent in June - 4,264 compared to 8.060 in the same month last year, and are down by 57.1 per cent for the year to date - 22,789 imports compared to 53,126 this time last year.

'A very difficult year'

Commenting on the registration figures Brian Cooke, Director General of the Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI) said: "Clearly 2020 has been a very difficult year to date, with new car registrations down 34.5 per cent year on year. The new 202-registration period commences today, which brings some hope for the Industry by providing an opportunity to increase sales. Consumers can see already the hugely varied and attractive new car offers. While pre-orders and enquiries are showing some positive signs, the lack of car hire and the ongoing concerns surrounding COVID-19 will see continuing downward pressure on new car demand.

"Going forward, recovery for the sector will be extremely challenging with both new car and commercial vehicle registrations at recession levels. Extension of Government supports beyond the current expiry dates will play an important role across all sectors, while for the motor industry changes in VRT that encourage motorists to trade up to a lower emitting car have the potential not only to protect local employment, but can also encourage renewal of the national vehicle fleet, which will play an important role in reducing emissions from transport. VRT reductions could help kick-start the Industry, increase demand and increase the overall tax take."

Electric registrations least affected

In the registrations charts, Toyota continues to lockout both the brand and individual models tables. The Japanese giant is the best-selling brand, followed by Volkswagen, Hyundai, Skoda and Ford. The best selling cars are the Toyota Corolla, the Hyundai Tucson, the Volkswagen Tiguan, the Ford Focus and the Hyundai Kona.

Diesel is still, amazingly, the best-selling engine type, accounting for 44.13 per cent of the total market. Petrol cars are on 37 per cent, followed by hybrids at 12 per cent, electric cars at 3.58 per cent, and plug-in hybrids at 2.2 per cent. Electric cars are the part of the car market that's least affected, for now. Although registrations of EVs in June fell by 20 per cent, the overall figure for the year has fallen by just 3.22 per cent.

Published on July 2, 2020
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