With car showrooms opening today (12 April), The UK automotive retail sector signalled its readiness to get showrooms up and running with the publication of new, updated sector-specific guidance by the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA) and Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) to ensure all premises are safe spaces for employees, customers and other visitors.
SMMT figures show that the new light commercial vehicle market grew by 85.5 per cent in March with 56,122 vans joining UK roads with the ’21 new number plate. Usually one of the busiest months of the year, March saw the largest-ever increase since the switch to the two plate system in 1999, but one which still represented an -10.9 per cent decrease when compared to the pre-pandemic 2015-2019 average, as prolonged nationwide lockdown continued to suppress business confidence in the first quarter of the year.
The car registration data from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) for the month of March shows that the UK new car market recorded its first ‘growth’ since August 2020, with 29,280 more units registered during March compared to the same month last year. However, the month represents the anniversary of the first lockdown in March 2020, when the pandemic brought Britain to a standstill and registrations fell by -44.4 per cent.
UK commercial vehicle (CV) production declined -45.4 per cent in February, with 4,308 units built, according to the latest figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). CV manufacturing entered its fifth consecutive month of decline as supply chain shortages, new customs processes and prolonged lockdown measures across the globe affected output, resulting in the worst February on record.
The UK new light commercial vehicle market grew by 22.0 per cent in the second month of the year, according to the latest figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). Usually one of the year’s weaker months as many operators wait for the new March number plate, 2021 saw the strongest February since 1998, with 17,205 new models hitting UK roads as demand from the construction sector and online deliveries drove new vehicle uptake.
The UK new car market declined by -35.5 per cent in February as 28,282 fewer units were registered during a traditionally weak month for new vehicle uptake, according to figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). The industry recorded its lowest February uptake since 1959, with 51,312 new cars registered.
According to figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), UK car production fell 27.3 per cent year-on-year in January to 86,052 units. This is the worst January performance since 2009, when UK factories made just 61,404 cars, and the drop of 32,262 units represents the 17th consecutive month of decline. The SMMT attributes January’s weak output to multiple factors, including the ongoing effects of the pandemic, global supply chain issues, extended shutdowns and friction in the new trading arrangements following the end of the Brexit transition period.
The UK new light commercial vehicle (LCV) market enjoyed growth in the first month of the year, according to the latest figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders. Registrations rose 2.0 per cent in January with 24,029 of the latest, low emission vehicles hitting UK roads as new models and deals drove fleet renewal. Although the fluctuating nature of fleet renewal often impacts the first month of the year in particular, 2021 opened with the highest volume January since 1990, 10.5 per cent ahead of five-year average.
January proved to be a traumatic month for new car sales in the UK, as the market fell -39.5 per cent in the month with 59,030 fewer registrations compared to January last year, according to figures published by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). Just 90,249 cars were registered as showrooms across the country remained shut, leading to the worst start to the year since 1970.
Figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) reveal that UK new light commercial vehicle (LCV) registrations ended 2020 down -20.0 per cent, with the van market rounding off the year in decline following three months of growth. 292,657 vehicles were registered in 2020, as the impact of Covid and uncertainty over the future relationship with the EU brought down demand toward the end of the year, with registrations in the final month of the year dropping -1.0 per cent, albeit with volumes consistent with previous Decembers.
According to figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), UK car manufacturing output fell 18.2 per cent in October. 110,179 units left UK factories during the month, 24,490 fewer cars than were made in October 2019, with the impact of coronavirus and fresh lockdowns at home and overseas subduing demand in many key markets.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s announcement of a five-month extension to the furlough scheme is good news for the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes described the decision to prolong the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), which pays employees 80 per cent of their current salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500, a “welcome lifeline” in a challenging environment of car showroom closures and lockdown. But he stresses that government support won’t suffice to keep the country’s vehicle manufacturers afloat.
UK car production fell in September, with output down -5.0 per cent, to register the worst performance for the month in 25 years, according to the latest figures published by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). Factories turned out 114,732 cars, a decline of some 6,000 units on the same month in 2019, as companies continued to wrestle with the uncertain economic and political environment and Covid-related challenging global market conditions.
The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has again urged both sides to re-engage the Brexit negotiation process with vigour in order to achieve a satisfactory deal. Bringing its latest calculations to the table, the industry association stresses that ‘no deal’ is a high stake gamble not only for the automotive sector but also for hopes of a green recovery from the coronavirus crisis.
We are continually being told that electric vehicles are the future – indeed, petrol and diesel-engined vehicles are scheduled to be phased out in the UK market; the original deadline was 2040, but this was brought forward to 2035, and there is talk of possibly introducing the ban in 2030. This last date is regarded by many as unachievable – when the deadline was brought forward to 2035, Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, described the situation as “extremely concerning” and accused the Government of “moving the goalposts.”