New car sales in the UK have fallen to their lowest level in 30 years

2022 is a banner year for the UK car industry, but not in a good way. About 1.61 million new cars were registered in the UK last year, down 2% from 2021, the lowest figure since 1992 and the lowest since before the pandemic, according to preliminary figures from the Motor Vehicle Safety Authority on Wednesday. 25% less. However, December marks the 5th consecutive month of growth in car sales (+18% to 128,000 units).

Despite falling sales, the UK is once again Europe’s second-biggest car market, reports SMMT. And for good reason, 2022 turned out to be a very bad year for many countries. The French car market also contracted by 7.83% in 2022, despite four months of growth in the second half of the year, according to figures published on Sunday, January 1 by the Automotive Platform (PFA), which represents manufacturers in the sector. In Germany, there are 1.1% more new registrations compared to 2021, i.e. 2.65 million. cars New in 2022, says the statement of the Federal Automobile Agency (KBA).

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2023 promises to be a better year

SMMT attributed the decline to supply chain issues by manufacturers, particularly in semiconductors, and production delays due to restrictions in China due to the coronavirus. Mike Hawes, chief executive of SMMT, said that the 2022 ” a very difficult year “.

Francois Roudier of the PFA, thought about the crises “collect”especially points out “(low) availability of electronic components, difficulties in the delivery of vehicles due to the lack of drivers, increased by the war in Ukraine, the increase in the cost of materials and very expensive fuel”. But he says there are signs of itsupply chain challenges begin to ease »

Pure this year, on the other hand, the British sectoral promotion association, predicts a 15% increase in new registrations. .

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas is packed with exhibitors and giving pride of place to the automobile.

Still, given the shortage of spare parts in 2022, manufacturers have focused SMMT on vehicles with zero CO2 emissions. Thus, manufacturers and buyers took time to turn to all-electric in 2022.

Full electrification is gaining momentum

In December alone, electric vehicles reached the largest market share ever recorded at almost 33%. For the whole year, they reached 17%, overtaking diesel cars for the first time and becoming the best-selling car category after petrol cars.

A trend confirmed all over Europe. In France, electric cars will account for 13% of total registrations in 2022, compared to 10% in 2021. “Major equipment manufacturers, able to invest in a context of declining volumes, bet on range and electricity”, confirms Francois Roudier, who believes that electricity will continue to benefit from a sharp rise in fuel prices and government subsidies to buy cars with low greenhouse gas emissions. 174 thousand electric and hybrid cars were newly registered in the German market in the last month of 2022 with an increase of 114%.

However, Norway is the world champion in the adoption of electric cars. About 80% of new cars registered in 2022 will be electric. The country, which is the world champion for zero-emission cars, has renewed its record in 2021 (64.5%). Today, one in five cars on Norwegian roads is fully electric, another world record.

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For the environmental union Greenpeace, this is a sign “We are starting to take the climate crisis seriously “. But be careful not to declare victory too soon.” Unfortunately, rising electricity prices and decreasing subsidies will have a negative impact on the attractiveness of electricity. cars electricity Reinhard Zirpel, president of the Federation of Car Importers (VDIK), warns in his press release.

(via AFP)