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Business and consumer demand for new cars declined in 2017

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Demand for new cars fell 6.8% last year, the first drop in six years.

Sales of business fleet purchases dropped as well by 4.5%. Total new car registrations fell 5.7% to just over 2.5 million cars.

This decline can be attributed to the unknown future of diesel/diesel levies and Brexit uncertainty, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).

The CEO of the SMMT, Mike Hawes, said that 2017 was a “lacklustre” year and that further weakening is to be expected in the market for 2018.

Business registrations saw the biggest fall with a 7.8% decline. These figures are an issue, but even so, demand is still at a historically high level, says Mike Hawes.

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UK car manufacturing falters in September

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The fall in UK car manufacturing was predominantly attributed to an overall fall in demand of 14% in the UK market.

UK car output fell 4.1% to 153,224 vehicles last month. The months of April, May, June and August also saw declines.

Domestic demand declined by a large sum to 31,421 units (14.2%) in September. This contributes to the overall year-to-date production decrease of 2.2%. Alongside this, exports dropped by 1.1% to 121,803.

The first nine months of 2017 has seen 1,259,509 cars manufactured, a decline of 2.2% when compared with last year.

With many looking towards more environmentally-friendly modes of transport and the advent of the e-car, the traditional British car manufacturers are unsurprisingly taking a hit. The beginning of this week saw Mayor Sadiq Khan introduce the toxicity charge (T-charge) to encourage people to drive less polluting cars. This will add to the already-existing £11.50 congestion charge.