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New car sales grow for 5th successive month
New car sales grew 9.3% in July – the fifth successive rise over 2011 figures and the largest single monthly increase so far in 2012.
This means that, so far this year, 1.2 million new cars have been sold in Britain.
The UK is defying the depressed markets of every other European country apart from Germany because of pent-up demand and some significant new model introductions for 2012, says industry body the SMMT.
The improvements so far this year meant the SMMT has revised its full year sales total up once again, by an extra 20,000 units, to 1.97 million units. This is a 1.6% rise on the 1.94 million cars sold in 2011.
On a 12-month rolling basis, sales are actually up 40,000.
However, the second half of the year may not see the big-number growth trend continue, warned SMMT chief executive Paul Everitt.
“SMMT’s full year forecast is for 1.97 million cars to be registered during 2012 suggesting a slight slowing of demand in the second half of the year,” said Everitt
“International economic stability remains a concern for vehicle manufacturers and the UK market, but intense competition and new fuel efficient products are creating great opportunities for motorists.”
The Ford Fiesta returned to the top of the UK best-sellers chart in July 2012, after being beaten by the Vauxhall Corsa in June. It was a Vauxhall two-three though, with the Ford Focus trailing the Brit-built Vauxhall Astra by some margin in fourth place.
The Sunderland-built Nissan Qashqai remained a strong seller in sixth place while the Mercedes C-Class was a surprise premium entrant in seventh. Vauxhall’s Insignia returned to the top 10 best-sellers chart too, meaning Vauxhall is the only manufacturer to have three cars in the top 10.
It’s people spending their own money that are leading the new cars sales growth: in July, private sales rose 26.4%, while fleet sales fell 1.6% and business sales grew by just 2.1%.
Overall, it seems Brits are managing their budgets with more sensible new car choices: the city car segment was the fastest-growing in July, with 93.4% growth. The dual purpose sector grew 42.5% while both supermini and MPV sectors also grew by double-digit amounts.
The UK’s fastest-growing vehicle brand in July was Chrysler. It sold 53 cars in July 2011 – but a sales total of 422 last month gives it an improvement of 696%…
UK’s best selling cars – July 2012
1 Ford Fiesta
2 Vauxhall Corsa
3 Vauxhall Astra
4 Ford Focus
5 VW Golf
6 Nissan Qashqai
7 Mercedes C-Class
8 VW Polo
9 Audi A3
10 Vauxhall Insignia
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