Car registrations hit the skids in June

Figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) found that UK new car registrations fell 24.3% in June to just 140,958 units. That makes it the weakest June performance since 1996.

Declines were most significant in large fleets, which recorded a 27.6% fall in registrations, while private consumer volumes dropped by a more modest 21.7%.

New car registrations for the year to date have fallen by 11.9% to 802,079 units – the weakest first half year performance since 1992, bar 2020, with some 107,894 fewer new cars registered during the first half of 2022 compared with the same period last year.

However, battery electric vehicles (BEVs) continued their growth in June with a 14.6% increase in volume, as market share rose to 16.1%, up from 10.7% a year before. Year-to-date growth is also healthy at 26%, but that is a deceleration from the first half of 2021, when EV’s enjoyed a growth rate of 161.3%.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: “The semiconductor shortage is stifling the new car market even more than last year’s lockdown. Electric vehicle demand continues to be the one bright spot, as more electric cars than ever take to the road, but while this growth is welcome it is not yet enough to offset weak overall volumes, which has huge implications for fleet renewal and our ability to meet overall carbon reduction targets. With motorists facing rising fuel costs, however, the switch to an electric car makes ever more sense and the industry is working hard to improve supply and prioritise deliveries of these new technologies given the savings they can afford drivers.”