New data revealed on Friday that the UK new car market declined in the first nine months of the year as Brexit uncertainty weighs on consumer confidence.
Figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders show that the new car market declined by 2.5% over the first three quarters of the year.
Registrations in the month of September increased by only 1.3% to 343,255 new vehicles.
September’s yearly growth comes after a significant decline of 20.5% for the same month in 2018 as “new emissions regulations and lack of testing capacity across Europe affected supply,” the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders said.
“September’s modest growth belies the ongoing downward trend we’ve seen over the past 30 months,” Mike Hawes, the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders’ Chief Executive, commented on the data.
“We expected to see a more significant increase in September, similar to those seen in France, Germany, Italy and Spain, given the negative effect WLTP had on all European markets last year,” Mike Hawes continued.
“Instead, consumer confidence is being undermined by political and economic uncertainty.”
Indeed, as the nation has now entered the month of the Brexit deadline, uncertainty prevails.
The BBC reported today the the European Union is “open but not convinced” by Boris Johnson’s new plans for a departure deal with the EU.
“We need to restore stability to the market which means avoiding a ‘no deal’ Brexit and, moreover, agreeing a future relationship with the EU that avoids tariffs and barriers that could increase prices and reduce buyer choice,” the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders’ Chief Executive said.
Many outside of the automobile sector have also warned against the a no deal Brexit. Indeed, at the end of September it was reported that many small business in the UK have either not prepared or are unable to prepare for a no deal scenario.
As for UK retail, household name John Lewis also warned against a no deal as it believes the scenario will have a “significant” impact on the business.