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New car sales bounce as dealerships reopen

NFDA 05/05/2021

“It is extremely encouraging to see sales of new cars bounce back in April reflecting the significant pent-up demand as the lockdown was eased across the UK and dealerships reopened”, said Sue Robinson, Chief Executive of the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA), which represents franchised car and commercial vehicle retailers in the UK.


The UK new car market saw a thirty-fold increase in April with 141,583 units registered compared with just 4,321 last year. Demand from private customers rose from just 871 registrations last April to 61,935. Sales of all segments experienced huge growth. SMMT has revised its forecasts upwards from 1.83 million to around 1.86 million new cars to be registered in 2021.


Sue Robinson added: “Sales of plug-in vehicles continue their upward trend. With new models coming to the market and retailers working hard to inform their customers and instil “charge confidence” as opposed to range anxiety, the sector is bound to perform well.


“April’s results are positive considering dealerships have been open for less than three weeks, with sales previously supported by click & collect; since reopening, customer footfall and volume of enquiries at dealerships have been strong and driving schools are seeing a major increase in young people booking driving lessons and tests.


“All of this leads us to believe that there is a very upbeat outlook ahead for the motor industry in the summer and retailers are looking forward to a further release of the pent-up demand accumulated over the past months”. 

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About the RMI

The Retail Motor Industry represents the interests of operators in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man providing sales and services to motorists and businesses. The RMI has a formal association with the independent Scottish Motor Trade Association which represents the retail motor industry in Scotland.