Bargains hope as sales slow
It's just a hunch but I wouldn't be surprised if there wasn't a fair bit of unsold stock on many importers' books over the next few months.
There are some more cautious sounds emanating from the industry as like a lot of places, including my own, the fears over Brexit and a lack of confidence in other areas, are taking a toll. In a way this could be good news for those of you who still might like to take the plunge and go for a new car in the 162 period which began this month. Manufacturers will be keen to offload all stock before January so there could be some really great bargains. As was pointed out last Thursday at a briefing by the Society of the Irish Motor Industry and DoneDeal, cars are already 3pc cheaper this year than last. The report said that 162 new car registrations for the first 20 days of July were up 11pc on last year at 21,525, however, this compares with registrations in the first six months of 2016 which at 101,335 were up 23pc on 2015.
Jim Power, economist and author of the SIMI/DoneDeal report said: "Despite the still-positive economic outlook, growth in car sales could be low or maybe even flat in 2017. This slowdown in growth reflects a market approaching, but still lower than, its natural state, after a prolonged period of catch up, but one that is now shrouded in Brexit uncertainty."
The review also highlights that the cost of motoring in general has decreased with the price of new cars down on average 3pc. Petrol prices have declined by 8.4pc and diesel also declined by 12.4pc. In contrast the cost of motor insurance is increasing at a significant pace again - increasing by 38.6pc in the first quarter of 2016. SIMI has raised the issue of rising insurance costs which are impacting most on younger drivers and those driving older cars.
Alan Greene, SIMI president, highlighted: "In the first six months of 2016, 32,285 used cars were imported but we have seen research quoted in the media that among these cars have been a significant number that should never be allowed on the road here. It is totally unacceptable that dangerously unsafe cars written-off and removed from the road in another jurisdiction can be registered and put back into service here. We also have cars written off here, which have no record of their unsafe status recorded on the NVDF to protect future buyers and other road users."