Press releases

Deloitte comments on SMMT new car registration figures

05 May 2021

Michael Woodward, UK automotive lead at Deloitte, said:

“With showrooms having reopened on April 12th, and both business and consumer confidence on the rise, it will be disappointing to some that new car sales lag behind their pre-pandemic levels.

“However, there is still hope that the sector could be set for a sustained period of recovery. After a year of restricted spending opportunities, savings and disposable income for some consumers are stronger than ever. Combined with more affordable financing costs and some hesitancy on the use of shared transport, the stage is set for car sales to rebound. Next month’s results will be more indicative of true consumer demand and will allow us to better assess the potential speed of the recovery.

“The ongoing global shortage of semi-conductors means that, even as sales start to return, there is little respite for the sector. As a result of the ongoing shortage, some manufacturers are struggling to meet demand and, in some cases, has also meant significantly reducing production forecasts, cutting hours and even idling factories.

Global car production is estimated to have been cut by 700,000 between January and March and with warnings that chip shortages could persist into next year, this is an issue that is not going away. We could see fundamental and lasting changes to supply chains.”

Jamie Hamilton, head of electric vehicles at Deloitte, said:

“Electric vehicles continued to see significant growth, with battery electric - 6.5% market share - and plug-in-hybrid - 6.8% market share - combining to achieve a 13% share of the market in April. This put them ahead of pure diesel yet again, which only captured 10% of the market. If this trend continues, then it is likely that EVs will be second only to petrol by the end of the year.

“With the volume of EVs rolling out of showrooms increasing each month, many dealers are now asking if they themselves have the right infrastructure in place to support this demand and enable onsite charging for test drives.”



Notes to editors

About Deloitte

In this press release references to “Deloitte” are references to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”) a UK private company limited by guarantee, and its network of member firms, each of which is a legally separate and independent entity. Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of DTTL and its member firms.

Deloitte LLP is a subsidiary of Deloitte NSE LLP, which is a member firm of DTTL, and is among the UK's leading professional services firms.

The information contained in this press release is correct at the time of going to press.

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