Rush to import over fears of Brexit barriers
Registrations of used imports have increased significantly over recent weeks in what is viewed as a rush to beat potential Brexit barriers. Vehicles are being registered at a rate that's 12pc+ higher than for the corresponding month last year. More than 100,000 were imported in total during 2018.
After a February lull, the now-defunct March 29 Brexit deadline seems to have sparked action by importers to have stock in hand. Year-to-date used-import registrations are marginally ahead of last year (2.8pc) but that could alter significantly depending on what happens next.
The uncertainty around Brexit is hammering new-car buying; latest registration figures show a 17pc plunge so far this month. They are also running 13pc lower than for the corresponding quarter last year. Pre-registrations will boost 'sales' before the end of the month, but can't disguise the downward slide. It is a good time to be buying.
* Separately, we have had several people on claiming there is a narrow gap between the CO2 emissions of an import and those of a new car.
Official statistics bear out the 3.5g/km difference except we are not dealing with like-for-like. Figures for imports were arrived at some years back while data for new cars are contemporaneous and stringently more accurate on real-world performance.
Ever tougher tests on fuel consumption and emissions are being calculated under the WLTP/NEDC system.
Additionally, current new diesels are more likely to have lower NOx emissions due to technological advances above what many three-year-old imports would have.
Yet, there is no gainsaying that such factors appear to matter little to people paying less for their used imports.