UK: Sales going up in October, but growth could slow down image

Last month’s new-car registrations in the United Kingdom were buoyed by the availability of cheap credit, with the total for the first ten months exceeding the 2 million units milestone.

Recently released industry data has shown that deliveries on the British market managed to pass the 2 million mark earlier in the year than any time since 2007, boosted by the continuing availability of near-zero interest cheap credit. According to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, October’s new car sales jumped 14% from the same period last year to 179,714 units, the best monthly rise since March.

New-car sales in Britain are made almost entirely (four out of five) on a financial scheme that is known as a personal contract plan (PCP) – the customers effectively rent a new car, usually for a period of three years – then trade it in as an advance for another new model. According to Trevor Finn, the chief executive of Pendragon, one of Britain’s biggest auto dealerships, the spectacular October rise can be partially attributed to the recent introduction of new finance offers by General Motors’ Vauxhall brand, one of Britain’s most popular.

SMMT Chief Executive Mike Hawes said that total car sales for 2014 are on their way to reach 2.46 million units –marking a return to pre-recession figures. Also, the October growth was almost threefold over the September figure, leading the executive to predict the growth might have reached its peak, SMMT forecasts 2015 sales to rise to just 2.49 million autos and remain essentially flat in 2016.

Via Reuters