This increase in new, eco-friendly cars on our roads has helped fuel a 1.4% growth in the overall number of new cars registered in the UK, compared to last October. And has come at a time when the price of petrol has risen more during last month than at any time since February 2013.
Mike Hawes, chief executive of the SMMT, was pleased to see continued market growth in October, as September can often be a hard month to follow.
He explained: “September’s number plate change is always a hard act to follow so the market’s growth in October, albeit moderate, is welcome news.
"Low interest rates, affordable finance packages and a range of exciting new models helped attract buyers into showrooms and we now look to government to ensure consumer and business confidence remains buoyant.”
The newly released figures from SMMT weren’t all positive, however. The number of new diesel registrations was down by 2.4% on this time last year.
However, despite this drop in diesel vehicle sales, by October 31 this year, over 2.33 million passenger cars had been registered, a 2.5% increase on the 2.27 million registered by this time in 2015. So, while it seems there’s still fallout from last year’s ‘dieselgate’ emissions scandal, the recent success of alternatively fuelled vehicles has kept the market growing well.
The SMMT’s figures also revealed that the Ford Fiesta is the UK’s best-selling car this year so far, with 7,806 new Fiestas registered in October alone, and 103,945 across 2016. With the Vauxhall Corsa in second place - with 68,831 newly registered cars this year-to-date - it seems that Ford will retain the top spot by the time 2016 comes to a close.
This continued great news for Ford comes not long after the Ford Mustang was named Britain’s top performance car.