UK new car registrations up in January
The UK automotive industry has hailed a 0.03% increase in new car registrations in January as a sign of the sector’s stability. Suppliers into the UK’s automotive industry will have been encouraged by the overall rise, while car manufacturers’ organisation the SMMT called on the government to further boost business and consumer confidence. Commenting on the 128,853 new car registrations in January, SMMT chief executive Paul Everitt said growth was boosted by the private market, up 2.7% on January 2011, and progress in the fleet sector. “2012 is set to be an exciting year with record numbers of new models coming to market filled with innovative technology that will save the motorist fuel, enhance comfort and further increase levels of safety and security. “However, to maintain market stability, government must act decisively and deliver much needed confidence to businesses and consumers,” he added. According to the SMMT registrations for alternatively-fuelled vehicles rose by nearly 18% in January, while demand for diesel cars rose, accounting for 53.7% of market share. The best-selling model in January was the Ford Fiesta, while the ‘superminis’ segment showed the greatest rise in volumes across the month. The SMMT, which has revised its full year forecast of the new car market in 2012 down 1.1% to 1.92 million vehicles, said growth in demand for luxury, dual purpose, executive and sports was also “evident”.