New HGV sales rally but LCV’s down slightly in July registrations

The Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI) today released their official new vehicle statistics. Light Commercials vehicles (LCV) are down 5.5 per cent (4,438) compared to July last year (4,697) but because of the lockdown period, the year to date are down 25 per cent (15,009).

Meanwhile, HGV (Heavy Goods Vehicle) registrations rallied and are up 2.8 per cent (258) for the month in comparison to July 2019 (251). However, again due to the lockdown, the year to date HGV’s are down 28.8 per cent (1,461).

New car registrations for July were down 14.1 per cent (21,213) when compared to July 2019 (24,681). While registrations year to date are also down 29.8 per cent (74,069) on the same period last year (105,439).

Used car imports for July (8,744) have seen a decrease of 6.8 per cent on July 2019 (9,382). While year to date imports are down 49.6 per cent (31,531) on 2019 (62,508).

Brian Cooke, SIMI Director General commenting on the market figures said: “While the July registration period did bring much needed activity back to showrooms, new car sales continue to disappoint, with another monthly fall. This is despite the fact that many quarter 2 sales had been pushed back into the 202 registration plate. COVID-19 on the back of BREXIT and an already falling new car market since 2016, now sees new car sales back to recession levels, down 30% year to date.

Looking further into the numbers, new car sales will fall for the fourth consecutive year, with a staggering 44% reduction over the last 4 years. This slowdown is materially undermining the renewal of the National car fleet, which is not only bad for profitability and regional employment, but is also hampering Ireland’s efforts to reduce transport emissions. With the Budget only two months away, we need to see a reduction in VRT, to allow the car market return to normal sustainable levels, which will reduce both the age of the fleet and emissions”