Irish diesel car sales are set to decline in light of bad March sales in the UK, according to an analyst.
March is usually the strongest month for diesel car sales but last month saw registrations in the UK down some 16% as the motor industry struggles to adjust to the clampdown on the fuel ordered by European countries, according to the Irish Examiner.
The much-maligned engine format has experienced a steady decline in light of mounting international backlash and political promises to ban diesel in the Republic by 2030.
Michael Rochford, managing director of Motorcheck.ie, told the paper that the downward trend was due to happen in Ireland as well, albeit at a slower pace.
“New diesel sales have slumped all over Europe as the fallout from the emissions scandal has seen governments planning to impose taxes and charges on higher polluting vehicles,” he said.
Rochford added that Ireland still had a long way to go to catch up to the UK with regards to second-hand cars. It is still hugely popular for Irish motorists to buy expensive diesel cars such as Audi, Mercedes and BMW with higher specificaitons at a far lower price than in the Republic, he added.
“Ireland is following the trend of the UK for new diesel sales where penalties are already in place,” he said. “In the Irish market, new diesel sales are down 20% year on year and down 30% in March. Interestingly however, sales of used diesel imports from the UK is up 7% year on year.”
“It seems demand in the used car market is still being driven strongly by the value that can be picked when it comes to second-hand diesel vehicles from the UK,” he continued.
However, the impact on second-hand values of cars at the end of personal contract pans had not been affected by cheaper UK imports so far, according to Rochford.
The crucial January sales for new diesel cars also saw a slump this year with a drop of 17% compared to the same time last year.
© 2018 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Kevin Duggan. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.