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September new car sales beat forecasts
The latest new car sales figures for England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales are out, and in the face of all the current economic doom and gloom they make for positive reading.
According to the latest data from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), new car sales in September 2012 were 8.2% higher than the same month in 2011.
With the arrival of the new 62-plate, September was always going to see a flurry of activity in the showrooms – but the 359,612 cars registered is about 26,000 more than the industry expected.
Paul Everitt, SMMT Chief Executive:
“The important September plate change market outperformed expectations with new car registrations increasing more than 8% on last year to 359,612 units.
“Although the economic outlook remains challenging, we are starting to see a tentative return of consumer confidence as motorists explore new products and the latest fuel-efficient technologies.”
The UK’s top seller is still the evergreen Fiesta – with Ford shifting 18,651 examples last month. It narrowly pipped its arch-rival, the Corsa, to the top slot, with Vauxhall shifting 17,089 units of its supermini. Ford’s global car, the Focus, found 13,837 homes – taking third place.
The SMMT also said that growth in new car registrations in the third quarter of this year reached 7.5%, the strongest quarterly growth rate since 2001 (disregarding the frenzied activity seen during the scrappage scheme).
So far this year, the SMMT says 1,620,609 new cars have been registered – an uplift of 4.3% over the first 9 months of 2011. That’s still far below the pre-recession levels of 2007, however, when closer to 2 million vehicles were registered over the same period.
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