UK new car sales news for 2012

New car sales have risen in 2012, with a 5.6 per cent overall rise, when compared to 2011. and the market seems to be weathering the Europe-wide economic crisis, but British buyers are downsizing.

New car registrations rose to 2.04 million units, according to Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, making it the highest since 2008. Before the recession back in 2007 new car sales reached 2.4 million units.

The incresed growth, the best result since 2008 is from strong demand of private buyers for cleaner, more efficient cars.

The UK new car market continues to weather the European economic storm by posting its best end-of-year sales, since the global banking crisis hit. This rise in British sales is the fastest seen in 11 years, and is in stark contrast to the contraction of most other European car markets. The UK is now the EU’s second largest new car market, behind Germany.

The best-selling car in the UK was the Ford Fiesta, which retains the top spot that it’s occupied since 2009, and it’s indicative of the move towards greener small cars. In 2012, the average CO2 figure across the 2,044,609 cars sold was 133g/km, and growth in the mini car and supermini sector was 54.2 and 5.6 per cent respectively.

Diesel-powered cars took 50.8 per cent of the market (up from 50.6 per cent in 2011), and private sales took a larger proportion of the market in 2012 (45.5 per cent) compared with 2011 (42.4 per cent). It’s this 12.9 per cent rise in demand from private buyers that the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) is attributing much of the strength of the UK market to.

Another heartening new car story is that UK-built cars are getting more popular. Volume rose by 11.1 per cent, and market share grew to 13.5 per cent.

The challenge for the UK industry now is to maintain sales in 2013 – a year, many expect to be tough in retail. Paul Everitt, SMMT chief executive commented: ‘Looking ahead to 2013, we anticipate the market will hold firm, with manufacturers and dealers working hard to deliver quality and value to motorists.’

All big carmakers posted record sales, though there were also some exceptions. It was not the best year for Lotus, who managed to sell just 137 cars in 2012, compared to 329 cars sold in 2011.

What were the UK’s favourite 10 cars in 2012?

You might be a little surprised at some of the cars in the line-up. Of  course, the best selling car was Ford Fiesta which continues its record. Fiesta total sales of 109,265, were followed by Vauxhall Corsa with sales of 89,434. Third was Ford Focus with 83,115 models delivered.

The Ford Fiesta is the supermini to beat – it’s stylish, comes with a wide variety of trim levels and engine options. The Fiesta is in the number one position because it’s good to drive, roomy and has very strong residuals. And if you go for the 1.6TDCi, you’ll also enjoy some of the lowest running costs of any car. It’s been facelifted for 2013, so expect another strong year.

Top 10 best selling models in 2012:

1. Ford Fiesta 109,265
2. Vauxhall Corsa 89,434
3. Ford Focus 83,115
4. Vauxhall Astra 63,023
5. Volkswagen Golf 62,021
6. Nissan Qashqai 45,675
7. BMW 3 Series 44,521
8. Volkswagen Polo 41,901
9. Mercedes C-Class37,261
10. BMW 1 Series 34,488