Press releases

Deloitte comments on SMMT new car registration figures

4 October 2019

Michael Woodward, UK automotive lead, Deloitte, said:

“Car sales grew by 1.3% in September compared to last year. The introduction of new 69 plates was always likely to drive sales but, when compared to a low volume month last year, this nominal growth could be a disappointment to the industry.

“Overall volumes are down compared to the rest of Europe, as the market suffers from Brexit uncertainty. However, the overall shape of the market is the same, with petrol and electric vehicles (EV) showing growth and diesel sales in decline. As sales of diesel take another hit (-20.3%), problems are mounting up for the industry as a surplus stock of new and used cars affect residual values.

“Once again, we have seen the EV market (+236.4%) perform tremendously. We are seeing exponential growth in the sector suggesting that the tipping point that we have been predicting is within reach.

“Current sales of EVs could be dwarfed by demand when the new 0% company car tax rates on zero-emission vehicles come into effect in April 2020.

“As a result of these tax incentives, a greater choice of models available, and a change in consumer attitudes towards the technology, we expect EVs to be an increasingly common sight on UK roads. The largest leasing companies are already reporting double, and in some cases triple, digit growth in orders for EVs. Some leasing companies could see EVs occupy more than 50% of new orders on their books in the next two years as employers across the UK consider electric as a way to reduce both costs and their impact on the environment.

“However, the predicted growth in demand for EVs will not come without challenges. Manufacturers and dealers will need to think carefully about how they manage this growth as there is a fear that demand will outstrip supply, a significant increase in EVs on the road will put pressure on the country’s charging infrastructure and considerable investment is still required.”


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