Motorists spending on UK car imports more than doubles
Spending by Irish motorists on UK car imports more than doubled in the first half of this year on the back of a strong Euro.
During the first six months of 2019, Irish motorists increased their expenditure on vehicles imported from the UK by 107pc when compared to the same period in 2018, according to financial services group Fexco.
This figure represents the number of transactions that individuals made using the Kerry-headquartered payments systems.
Overall, the total number of used cars imported here during the first half of 2019 rose to 53,120 – up 2.4pc on the same time last year - putting Ireland on target to smash the record annual total of 100,755 used cars imported in 2018.
David Lamb, head of dealing at Fexco Corporate Payments, said: “While Ireland’s car dealers were the first to spot the buying opportunities offered by cheaper British imports, the savings are now attracting growing numbers of individual buyers too.
“The UK has a much greater supply of used and nearly new cars than Ireland, so a British used car will typically cost less than a similar model on this side of the Irish Sea. When you factor in the added purchasing power the strong Euro gives Irish buyers looking to the UK for their next car, the case for buying British can be compelling,” he added.
This comes as official figures from the Society of Irish Motor Industry (SIMI) show that new car registrations continue to slow across Ireland.
A total of 80,712 new cars were registered during the first six months of 2019, down 7.4pc on a year ago.
The figures, based on analysis of more than 4,200 transactions made through Fexco Corporate Payments, show the number of UK vehicles imported by Irish drivers rose by 74pc on 2018 levels, and the average amount each buyer spent rose by a fifth to €17,709.
Data from Fexco suggests the import boom is being driven mostly by individual motorists rather than car dealers.
It found that Irish car dealers increased their spending on UK imports by 30pc between 2018 and 2019, a jump less than a third of the surge recorded by motorists.