Despite a decline in new car sales, franchised dealers saw strong consumer demand in September, with nearly all dealerships open and good deals available on new plate vehicles, according to the latest SMMT’s new passenger car registration figures.

The UK new car market saw a -4.4% decline in September with 328,041 units registered. Year to date, 1,243,656 new cars have been registered, -33.2% less than last year. In September, sales of battery electric vehicles rose by 184.3% and plug-in hybrids grew by 138.6%. Diesel saw a decline of -38.4% and petrol was down -20.9%.

Although parts of the UK are facing restrictions, franchised dealers continue to operate as normal taking all the necessary precautions to serve their customers safely.

Dealers have been experiencing high levels of enquiries, but consumer interest was partially offset by supply constraints that have affected a number of brands over the past weeks. Positively, battery electric and plug-in electric vehicles saw strong growth.

With the UK’s exit from the EU approaching, NFDA has urged the Government to reach a deal which protects the supply of vehicles and parts to the UK.