New Car Sales down 8% for Q1 2017

April 3, 2017, 13:00

New Car Sales down 8% for Q1 2017

Dip in new car sales for the third straight month is a result of Brexit, exchange rates and uncertainty.

Official new car sales figures released today by Car History experts Motorcheck.ie show New Car Sales have continued to decline for the third straight month with registrations to the end of March 2017 down 7.5%. The decrease means that the Motor Trade has finished the first quarter of 2017 8% behind 2016 figures.

Commenting on the falling sales, Michael Rochford, Managing Director of Motorcheck.ie said “the industry is coming off 3 years of sustained annual growth with 30% year-on-year increases becoming commonplace. This was never going to be sustained into the future and it was felt that this year would see a levelling off in sales. The dip in sales is largely down to uncertainty in the economy caused by Brexit, whilst the strength of the EURO against Sterling has made it very attractive to import used vehicles from the UK and consequently many people are opting for a nearly new import rather than a brand-new vehicle”.

Used vehicles imported into the state continue to soar with registration figures up 56% for Q1 of 2017 compared to the same period last year. With almost 24k used vehicles being brought into country in Q1 the motor trade is predicting a total of 90k used vehicles to be imported in 2017 compared to only 72k in 2016.

Motorcheck, however, has warned that consumers need to be vigilant when considering the purchase of used imports from the UK, whether buying from a Motor Dealer in Ireland or importing the vehicle themselves. “We have seen the rates of clocked vehicles and written off vehicles increase slightly in Q1 largely due to the increase in Used Imports” said Rochford.

Car Sales Stats below…

New Car Sales Highlights:

  • Car registrations for Q1 2017 decreased 8.3% (75.9k units) against Q1 2016 (82.8k units)
  • March 2017 sales were 7.5% down on March 2016 (19.9k units vs 21.5k units)
  • The top selling manufacturers were Toyota, Ford, Volkswagen, Hyundai and Nissan
  • The top selling models were the Hyundai Tucson, Nissan Qashqai, Ford Focus, Skoda Octavia and Volkswagen Golf

Light Commercial Sales Highlights:

  • LCV registrations for Q1 2017 decreased 10.66% (11.9k units) against Q1 2016 (13.4k units)
  • March 2017 sales were 8.4% down on March 2016 (3.1k units vs 3.4k units)
  • The top selling manufacturers were Ford, Volkswagen, Renault, Toyota and Peugeot
  • The top selling models were the Ford Transit, Volkswagen Caddy, Ford Transit Connect, Renault Traffic and Peugeot Partner.

Used Car Import Highlights:

  • Used Car imports for Q1 2017 increased 56% (23.8k units) against Q1 2016 (15.3k units)
  • March 2017 sales were 56% up on March 2016 (8.6k units vs 5.5k units)
  • The top imported manufacturers were Ford, Volkswagen, Audi, Toyota and Vauxhall/Opel
  • The top imported models were the Ford Focus, VW Golf, VW Passat, Audi A4 and Nissan Qashqai