New car registrations hit 10-year high

Ford Fiesta 1.0 80PS action
4 Apr, 2014 9:00am Jake-Aman Shah

The number of new cars registered in March 2014 stands at 465,000, an increase of almost 18 per cent on last year

The number of new cars registered in March was up nearly 18 per cent on the same month in 2013, with the Ford Fiesta at the top of the best sellers list.

Figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) reveal the total number of new car registrations stands at 465,000 for March, a 10 year high, only narrowly trailing the 2004 March total of 466,954 units.

Registrations for new cars are at an all time high for a number of reasons claims SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes, “Drivers are attracted by the increase in quality of new cars as well as newer technology that helps drivers run their cars more cheaply”. 

Small cars and MPVs selling big in 2014

Market statistics also show some interesting changes from March 2004, with a strong shift towards smaller cars and MPV’s. There has also been a 35 per cent fuel efficiency increase with cars now getting almost 58mpg, on average.

Alternatively fuelled vehicles also enjoyed excellent sales increases with a 64 per cent increase and a sales total of almost 9,000 units. 

There is good news for British manufacturing too, with the British-built Vauxhall Astra in the top 5 best sellers, both in March and over the year to date, having sold 17,500 units since January.

Car buyers’ preferences in paint shade have also changed over the decade, with the most popular colour choice white, a change from silver in 2004.

Attractive finance deals have also helped boost sales with many drivers able to take advantage of low cost lease agreements and switch their vehicles more easily.