Diesel-powered cars took a 45.3 per cent share of the November market, bettering the 45 per cent rate of December 2005, when sales were boosted by regulatory tax changes. The recent growth follows consumers attempting to lower their CO2 emissions and improve the efficiency of their vehicles at a time when fuel costs have risen significantly.
Diesel registrations are expected to grow by eight per cent and exceed 40 per cent of the total market by the end of 2007 – perhaps not surprising with current fuel prices, considering that new diesel engines are around 20 per cent more fuel-efficient than a petrol equivalent.
The growth in private demand has continued. Sales in diesel and alternatively fuelled vehicles continue to grow, up 10.2 and 68.2 per cent respectively. Concerns remain about the sustainability of sales growth in light of the global credit crunch and cost pressures on consumers and business alike.
The Ford Focus returned to the top of the best sellers list in November, a position it also holds over the year-to-date.
MINI volumes doubled in the month and it took eighth place in the best sellers list. Superminis, like the MINI, recorded a 2.8 per cent growth over the year-to-date.
Audi, BMW, MINI and Nissan recorded impressive gains in November. Over the year-to-date Audi, BMW, MINI and Vauxhall have seen the strongest growth – a reflection of the popularity of new products.