2016 – a record year for UK new car registrations 0

2016--a-record-year-for-UK-new-car-registrations2016 saw a whopping 2.7 million new cars registered; though experts are predicting a fall in 2017, as Brexit negotiations start to bite.

Last year was a record breaking year for registrations, but the pound in its current weaker position, plus the impending exit talks should see an end to the boom, experts are predicting.

Figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) revealed 2,692,786 new vehicles were registered in 2016, beating the previous record by 2.3 percent.

Mike Hawes, chief executive of the SMMT attributed the spike to a range of new models going on sale, plus a growing market of attractive finance options on new cars. Fleet sales continued their push as the driving force in the UK’s car industry, with new registrations rising by 4.8 percent compared to 2015. Private and business registrations fell by 0.2 percent and 1.2 percent respectively.

Hawes said that 2016’s record sales are unlikely to be repeated for the foreseeable future; the SMMT have predicted that sales will fall by 5 to 6 percent due to a combination of the weaker Sterling plus the economic and political uncertainty caused by the Brexit negotiations, which will commence will gusto once Prime Minister Theresa May triggers Article 50 later this year.

Hawes said:  “Despite 2016’s political and economic uncertainties, the UK’s new car market delivered another record performance as car makers offered an incredible range of innovative and high tech models. 2017 may well be more challenging as sterling depreciation raises the price of imported goods but, with interest rates still at historic lows and a range of new models arriving in 2017, there are still many reasons for consumers to consider a new car in 2017.

“Looking longer term, the strength of this market will rest on our ability to maintain our current trading relations and, in particular, avoid tariff barriers which could add significantly to the cost of a new car.”

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