Confidence is key to Euro-wide lift in new-car sales
OUR big increase in car sales here - admittedly off a low base - is part of a resurgent trend across Europe, a new report shows.
It reveals that there have been 11 months of consecutive growth across the continent, reflecting consumer confidence.
Sales increased by an average 5.4pc in July with similar rises coming in the five biggest markets.
The latest analysis from JATO Dynamics found that
22 of the 29 countries analysed had year-on-year increases.
Few can compare, however, to what it says is a 61.6pc surge in registrations in Ireland in July.
It does, in fairness, attribute our new split-registration system to that dramatic figure and the fact we are coming off such a low base.
The report says: "Ireland benefitted from a split registration system, which gave consumers a better choice in buying their new car mid-year rather than during the busy first quarter."
In Europe, nine of the top 10 brands increased sales compared with July 2013. Skoda did best, the report says, with a 27.8pc lift.Government incentives - remember them? - in Spain prompted 11.3pc growth for the month.
Meanwhile purchases in Britain (+6.6pc) and Italy (+5.3pc) also reflected a lot of activity during July, while Germany returned to growth of 6.8pc following a slight fall in June. French sales dropped 4.3pc but on a year-to-date basis sales are still just ahead (up 1.9pc).
Best deals in June and December
Now that we have two 'new' registrations periods a Motorcheck.ie analysis of sales figures shows that June and December are "the ideal months" for buyers to get the best deals.
The study says that it is clear from the registration numbers that the end of June or December represents the best time to go looking to buy a new car.
It claims that with sales at a low ebb, dealers and importers could be "pressed hard" to hit their targets.