May small-car sales up by 50%

May small-car sales up by 50%

A 50% jump in small-car sales last month has proved to be the only bright side of the much-vaunted "cash for bangers" scrappage scheme.

According to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) it has had little effect elsewhere, with new-car sales - 134,858 - down 28% on last year.

With sales graphs heading downhill for the 13th consecutive month, registrations for the first five months of this year fell 27.9% compared with 2008.

The scheme gives a £2,000 cash incentive to owners of cars and small vans more than 10 years old when they trade them in for a brand-new vehicle.

The Government hailed the £300 million a success when it claimed last week that tens of thousands of people have already taken advantage of it to order a new car.

However, says SMMT chief executive Paul Everitt: "While consumer confidence is improving, the UK motor industry is still facing a difficult economic climate.

"We have seen an encouraging start to the scrappage incentive scheme with 35,000 orders being placed since it was announced, although it will take time to feed into registration figures."

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