Ireland new car registrations March 2024

Registrations of new EVs plunge in March 2024.

New car registrations in Ireland fell by 16 per cent in March compared to the same month last year. With 14,936 registrations last month, 62,807 new cars have been registered so far this year, representing an eight per cent rise overall compared to the same period in 2023.

That's something of a mixed picture for the car market as a whole, but where electric cars are concerned, there's been an enormous fall-off in registrations. Registrations of electric cars fell by 42 per cent in March, compared to the same month in 2023. For the year as a whole, registrations of electric cars have fallen by 14.3 per cent, a figure which will be sending more than a few shockwaves through the motor trade in this country.

Petrol dominates, diesel recovers

As it stands for 2024 so far, petrol power still dominates, with 33.7 per cent of all new cars registered having a petrol-only engine, while diesel continues to make a modest recovery, holding 23.05 per cent of the market. Hybrids have 21.33 per cent of the market, with fully electric cars on 12.69 per cent. Plug-in hybrids make up a modest, but growing, 7.92 per cent of registrations.

Much more difficult

Commenting on the figures, Brian Cooke, SIMI Director General, said: "While the new car market started strongly in the first two months of the year, March proved to be much more difficult. New car sales showed a 16 per decrease on the same month last year, although sales for the first quarter remain eight per cent ahead of 2023. Sales of light and heavy commercial vehicles both show growth in registrations for March. Sales across all fuel types were behind last year, with the Electric Vehicle segment seeing a notable decline. This highlights the ongoing challenge of transitioning to electrification, as we move into the mainstream car market. The electrification of the fleet requires increased collaboration between all stakeholders to bridge this current chasm in the market. For the Industry, this means investment and delivery of EV technology. For Government, this means increased support in terms of extension of current incentives, including purchase grants and Benefit-In-Kind (BIK) relief for companies, and working with private enterprise to upgrade the national charging infrastructure, to boost consumer confidence in making the switch to electric vehicles."

Van sales

In other parts of the market, used car imports rose by 11 per cent in March and have grown by 24 per cent for the year as a whole. While passenger car registrations appear to be somewhat volatile, the sales of vans and other light commercial vehicles - a fairly reliable indicator of the health of the economy as a whole - continue to do well, climbing by 31.7 per cent in March and 34 per cent for the year as a whole.

Toyota on top

Toyota continues to hold the top sales spot for brands, followed by Skoda, Volkswagen, Hyundai, and Kia. Zoë Bradley, Head of Marketing Communications and Corporate Affairs in Toyota Ireland, said: "It's a fantastic achievement to close out the quarter as Ireland's bestselling car brand for the fourth year in a row. Despite the continued popularity and familiarity of diesel which impacts the move to electrified driving, we're seeing increasing demand from Irish motorists for a more environmentally friendly car choice like hybrid vehicles which immediately reduce CO2 and NOX emissions compared to diesel or petrol models without compromising on power and performance. We're proud to offer the widest range of electrified models on the Irish market, with hybrid and battery electric options. We're excited to see what the year ahead has in store for sustainable motoring, with new arrivals like our Toyota C-HR Plug in Hybrid and our expanding range of electrified models which give customers a choice of low emission cars to suit a range of lifestyles and budgets."

The best-selling individual model so far this year is - you've guessed it - the Hyundai Tucson, followed by the

Skoda OctaviaKia SportageToyota RAV4, and
Toyota Yaris Cross. The best-selling electric brand is currently Volkswagen, followed by Hyundai, Tesla, BYD, and Kia while the best-selling individual electric model is the Hyundai Kona, followed by the Tesla Model 3, Volkswagen ID.4, Volkswagen ID.3, and the MG 4. The overall best-selling car in March was the Skoda Octavia, while the best-selling electric car was the Tesla Model 3.



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Published on April 2, 2024