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New car sales jump for first time in 6 years

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THE number of new cars being sold in Ireland has risen for the first time since the economic slump, with more than 90,000 vehicles taking to the road last year.

That's an increase of almost 30pc on the numbers sold in 2013, the first time sales have increased in six years.

However, sales of new cars are still well-down from Celtic Tiger-era levels.

In 2008 - the year economic turmoil struck - 146,470 new cars were sold. The following year the figure nosedived to 54,432.

When it comes to choosing our new vehicles, German efficiency leads the way with car manufacturer Volkswagen the primary choice among new Irish car sales.

Some 11,329 new Volkswagen cars were bought last year including Golf, Scirocco and Passat models.

Behind Volkswagen on the list of most new cars sold was Toyota, with the Japanese company proving once again that it is a consistent choice.

The manufacturer sold a total of 9,658 new vehicles in Ireland last year, followed in third police by American company Ford which sold just over 9,000 cars.

The most popular make of used car sold in Ireland last year was the Ford, with 9,040 sales.

The biggest rise was perhaps in the purchase of electronic motors, with an overall increase of 400pc.

In 2013 a mere 51 electric vehicles were sold, but that increased substantially last year to 222.

Despite the sharp spike in cars being sold, electric cars are still well off petrol (13,929) and diesel (47,559) engine cars sold last year.

One area that has decreased in overall vehicle sales was the agricultural sector, with the number of tractors sold half that of the previous year's number.

In 2013 a total of 11,001 new and used tractors were bought in the country, but the number dropped significantly to 4,543 last year.

The growth between 2013 and 2014 may have been higher but for 2013 figures having been inflated by the introduction of the Non-Use of Motor Vehicles Act 2013.

The act states that motorists who forget or fail to declare their car as being off the road can be forced to pay arrears and at least three months' motor tax in a bid to clamp down on evasion.

advance

Since August 2013, anyone planning to stop driving their car on a public road must tell their local tax office at least three months in advance.

Failure to do so can result in them paying the tax for the period when the car was off the road, with interest of up to 10pc plus another three months' tax.

The act would have seen more people sell cars that had been off the road in a bid to avoid paying sums for a vehicle that wasn't in use.

rschiller@herald.ie


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