New car registrations in the UK rose by 26.4 per cent to 134,344, with the Ford Fiesta regaining top spot. But it’s the Nissan Qashqai at the top for the year so far.
New car registrations are still a long way short of numbers pre-Covid as its hangover and supply chain problems constrain production.
Despite that, October 2022 saw the third monthly increase in new car registrations in a row, with numbers up by 26.4 per cent to 134,344. Although that rise is perhaps misleadingly large as October 2021 was a particularly poor month.
The big rise was driven primarily by fleet registrations which grew by 47.4 per cent to 67,911, with private registrations up by a much more modest 7.4 per cent ((to 62,714) and small business sales up 108.6 per cent. Although small business sales are a small part of the market, accounting for just 3,719 registrations.
As has become the norm – in part due to prioritisation by car makers – registrations of hybrids rose by 81.7 per cent.
Top of the registration tree for October – after being missing in action for quite some time – was the Ford Fiesta, a car Ford will bin next year as it accelerates its move to EVs. But the car at the top of the tree for 2022 so far was the Nissan Qashqai, and it was just three registration away from beating the Fiesta to the top spot for October too.
Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said:
A strong October is hugely welcome, albeit in comparison with a weak 2021, but it is still not enough to offset the damage done by the pandemic and subsequent supply shortages. Next year’s outlook shows recovery is possible and EV growth looks set to continue but, to achieve our shared net zero goals, that growth must accelerate and consumers given every reason to invest.
But with inflation running high and interest rates rising, it’s hard to see 2023 coming back strongly to pre-Covid levels.