As executives dismiss fears of a saturated market and look ahead to another bumper year in Europe’s fastest-growing new car market, the UK car industry expects to smash official growth forecasts for 2014.
Those official forecasts expect strong growth to level off in 2014, with about a 1 % increase in sales of new cars. But some of the UK’s biggest-selling carmakers have said they are expecting growth of close to last year’s 10 % plus, as Britain’s economic rebound continues to gather steam and consumer confidence rises.
Surging car sales in the UK, Europe’s largest market for new cars after Germany, have been among the most visible signs of confidence in the emergence from recession. With annual turnover of £ 40 billion and employing over 700,000 people, the UK car industry is fuelling exports and its success can be expected to feed through to other parts of the economy.
Sales growth in 2013 was fuelled mainly by an abundance of cheap credit. The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, the UK trade body, has cautioned that the country may have reached a plateau of new vehicle demand, with its forecast for a 1 % rise in new car sales in 2014.
Vauxhall, the UK’s second-biggest car brand by sales, is expecting growth of about 8 % in 2014, while Japanese carmaker Nissan has said it expects market performance this year in line with 2013, the biggest-selling year since 2007. Toyota and Hyundai both expect to see their sales rise 5 and 4 % respectively, the companies said.
Via Financial Times