New car sales for 2014 (96,338 units ) were 30 per cent up on 2013, according to figures released recently by the Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI ).
The month of December registered a 65 per cent (350 ) increase compared with the same month in 2012 (212 ), however it should be noted that volumes for December are very small.
Light commercial vehicles sales saw a 51 per cent increase for the year end with sales totalling (16,652 ) in comparison to 2013 (11,006 ). The number one and number two spots, again as in 2013, in both make and model going to Ford and VW respectively (Ford Transit and VW Caddy ).
HGV (heavy goods vehicle ) sakes were also, with a 16 per cent increase in registrations for 2014 (2000 ) in comparison to 2013 (1,723 ).
New motorcycle sales finished the year 25 per cent up on 2013 with over 1,000 units sold. The top five manufacturers were Honda, BMW, Suzuki, Yamaha, and Harley-Davidson respectively.
Used car sales, which had remained relatively unchanged for the past number of years increased by almost 50,000 vehicles in 2014 with more than 835,000 used vehicles changing hands during the year, an increase of 6.3 per cent on last year.
Used cars imported into Ireland from other jurisdictions such as Great Britain and Northern Ireland were also up by 8.4 per cent with 54,290 used vehicles registered in 2014.
“Early indications are that the positive trends will continue in 2015 with new car sales predicted to breach the magical 100,000 units. This was last achieved in 2008 when 142k units were sold,” said Michael Rochford, managing director of Motorcheck.ie
In passenger vehicles Volkswagen, again, continue to take the plaudits for top manufacturer and top make, with the VW marque ahead of the next highest manufacturers (Toyota, Ford, Hyundai, and Nissan ) in new car registrations. The VW Golf is the market leader with sales for the model up 23 per cent year on year. The rest of the top five were Nissan Qashqai, Ford Focus, Ford Fiesta, and Toyota Corolla respectively.
Alan Nolan, director general SIMI commented: “As 2014 has drawn to a close we are pleased to end the year with new car sales 30 per cent ahead of the previous year. While all of this has to be put in the context of the very low base that we are starting from, we are confident that 2015 will see sales for all segments continue to grow and improve on 2014.”
Nolan continued: “Buoyed by the increase in new vehicle sales, employment in our industry increased by 4,000 in 2014, surpassing 40,000 for the first time since the start of the recession. New car sales continue to be a very important contribution for the Exchequer, with the increase in activity delivering an additional €185 million between VAT and VRT for the Exchequer in 2014. The industry is confident that anticipated growth in 2015 can only increase both employment and Government revenues.”