New car registrations for February were up 5.30 per cent (13,834 ) when compared to February 2020 (13,138 ), but registrations for the year to date are still down 11 per cent (38,986 ) on the same period last year (43,788 ).
The latest data from the SIMI tells us that used car imports for February (5,757 ) have seen a decrease of 7.04 per cent on February 2020 (6,193 ). The year to date figures for imports are down 1.84 per cent (12,579 ) on 2020 (12,815 ).
New electric car registrations increased dramatically for the month of February with 813 registered compared to 390 on the same month last year. So far this year 1,791 new electric cars have been egistered in comparison to 1,281 on the same period last year - an increase of 46 per cent.
Both hybrid and plug-in hybrid cars also continue to increase their market share, according to SIMI. The figures show the top five selling brands last month were Toyota, Hyundai, Volkswagen, Skoda and Ford.
Light commercial vehicles (LCV ) are up 51.30 per cent (3,315 ) compared to February last year (2,191 ) and the year to date figures are up 6.39 per cent (8,339 ). Heavy goods vehicle (HGV ) registrations are down 15.8 per cent (224 ) in comparison to February 2020 (266 ). The year to date figures for HGVs are down 9.5 per cent (563 ).
Commenting on the latest figures, Brian Cooke, SIMI director general said although new car sales were slightly up when compared to February last year, they are down 11 per cent year to date and down 18 per cent on 2019.
“Strong pre-orders at the end of last year along with the ability to offer a click and deliver service have helped the industry, as has the reduced VAT rate during the first two months of the year, which has brought some March sales forward.
“Looking ahead to March, with most year-end pre-orders having been fulfilled, the increased VAT rate and with the absence of car hire, it is anticipated that the month ahead will be a challenging one for the industry.”