The new car market remained stable in January, with a small decline of -1.6%, supported by increases in private demand and sales of alternative fuel vehicles. New passenger car registrations declined by -1.6% in January with 161,013 units registered. Sales of petrol cars rose by 7.3%, diesel declined -20.3% and alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) grew by 26.3%. Private demand increased by 2.9%, while fleet was down -3.4%.
Positively, sales of alternative fuel vehicles grew substantially in January and we expect the sector to perform well throughout 2019 as new models enter the market and the current ones become more affordable.
It is encouraging to see that demand from private consumers grew by 2.9%. With different types of vehicles coming to the market and new emission figures available, retailers have an important role to play in informing consumers and helping them choose the right car.
The retail automotive industry is flexible and resilient, but we urge the Government to provide clarity to businesses and consumers as soon as possible.
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