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Dublin: 5 °C Friday 21 February, 2020

New '132' reg system drives huge increase in August car sales

There was a 20 per cent increase in new car sales in August compared to the same month last year. However, looking at the year as a whole, sales are down 8 per cent.

Image: Alexander Clarkin via Shutterstock

A TOTAL OF 3,698 new cars were driven off Ireland’s forecourts in August – representing a 20 per cent increase on the same month last year.

That’s according to statistics provided to dealers’ body the Society of the Irish Motor Industry by the Revenue service.

The introduction on the new six-monthly registration system introduced at the start of July has, as expected, provided a boost for the sector.

“July and August accounted for 22 per cent of new car sales so far this year, compared to just 10 per cent for the same period last year, so the new plate is spreading sales, which was the main aim of its introduction,” Director General of the SIMI Alan Nolan said.

However, the figures for the year to date show overall sales are down nearly 8 per cent, and dealers are calling for measures to be introduced in next month’s Budget to help the retail sector – and in particular the motor trade.

“With the Budget only 7 weeks away, we’ll be asking the Minister to construct a Budget that encourages consumer spending and we will be putting forward proposals on incentives that will help increase new car sales and their associated tax revenues,” Nolan said.

Volkswagen was the best selling make of car last month, and the BMW 5 series was the best selling model.

There was also an increase in the number of vans sold, up 15 per cent on last August to 818. There was a 76 per cent increase in sales of trucks, with 197 sold.

More cars were sold on the first day of July this year than in the whole of June as the new plates were introduced.  1,927 new cars were sold, compared to just one on the same day last year (which fell on a Sunday) or just 140 new cars on 2 July (the next business day).

Read: Here’s how the 132 reg plate did in its first 13 days >

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Daragh Brophy

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