(Alliance News) – The UK automotive market rounded off its “toughest year” in nearly three decades with another month of decline in new car registrations, an industry body said on Wednesday.
According to the UK’s Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders, new car registrations fell by 11% annually to 132,682 in December, from 148,997.
For the whole of 2020, registrations plunged by 29% to 1.6 million from 2019’s 2.3 million.
It was the “toughest year for the market since 1992”, SMNT said.
SMNT added: “Against a backdrop of Covid restrictions, an acceleration of the end of sale date for petrol and diesel cars to 2030 and Brexit uncertainty, the industry suffered a total turnover loss of some GBP20.4 billion.
“It was, however, a bumper year for battery and plug-in hybrid electric cars, which together accounted for more than one in 10 registrations – up from around one in 30 in 2019.”
SMNT said electric cars had their best-ever year. Battery and plug-in hybrids now have a market share of just shy of 11%.
It is now “essential” to invest in charging infrastructure and batteries, SMNT added, to reboot the ailing automotive industry.
“With the rollout of vaccines and clarity over our new relationship with the EU, we must make 2021 a year of recovery. With manufacturers bringing record numbers of electrified vehicles to market over the coming months, we will work with government to encourage drivers to make the switch, while promoting investment in our globally-renowned manufacturing base – recharging the market, industry and economy,” SMNT Chief Executive Mike Hawes said.
By Eric Cunha; firstname.lastname@example.org
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