New car sales in September were up 28 per cent on the same month last year, but the market remains 7 per cent down for the year compared to the same period in 2012.
There were 3,175 new cars registered last month, bringing the total for the year to date to 71,717, according to figures from the Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI). Volkswagen remains the biggest brand on the market with a 12.7 per cent share, while its Golf model is the best-selling model of 2013 so far. The German brand has established a significant lead over its rivals. Toyota is in second place with a 10.4 per cent market share with 7,457 registrations, followed closely by Ford with 10.23 per cent. Korean brand Hyundai looks likely to end the year as a top-five brand in Ireland, with a market share of 7.91 per cent, ahead of Nissan on 7.27 per cent.
According to Alan Nolan, director general of SIMI, "The new dual registration plate system helped to make the most of the very low retail market this year and will continue to benefit the industry and consumers in the future. However, there is no concealing the fact that 2013 has been the second-worst year since the recession started. After 2009, with 59,000 new car registrations, this has actually been the worst year since 1993."
The motor trade lobby group has submitted its pre-Budget submissions which includes a proposal for the introduction of a new “swappage” incentive scheme that would involve a €2,000 VRT refund on a new car purchase if the customer is trading a six-year-old car or older.
It claims the scheme could deliver an additional €80 million in VRT and Vat in addition to supporting some 2,200 extra jobs.