Brexit uncertainty and the diesel emissions scandal has hurt demand for new cars, warns industry body
- Introduction: UK car sales fell almost 7% last year
- Full data will be released at 9am
The drop in car sales can be firmly pinned on the 2015 diesel emissions scandal, which exposed how Volkswagen has used ‘cheat software’ to hide how much pollution its cars were pumping out.
This hurt demand for new diesel cars, and slashed the second-hand value of old diesels – making it harder to trade them in for a shiny new model.
UK car sales have now fallen for two years running. The 7%-ish drop in 2018 follows a 5.7% drop in 2017.
The head of the SMMT, Mike Hawes, fears that car sales could fall sharply again if the UK crashes out of the EU without a deal.
Hawes says is vital that a hard Brexit is avoided, saying:
“It’s still hard to see any upside to Brexit.
“Everyone recognises that Brexit is an existential threat to the UK automotive industry and we hope a practical solution will prevail.”
Good morning, and welcome to our rolling coverage of the world economy, the financial markets, the eurozone and business.