Justin Benson, Head of Automotive at KPMG in the UK, comments on the SMMT’s car registration figures for February, released today.
He said: “Diesel car sales continue to fall, albeit at a slower rate than recent months. However, diesel should still be a relevant choice for consumers, as the latest technology does help address air quality issues. Whilst sales for petrol and alternatively fuelled vehicles are increasing, they are not filling the gap. Consumer confidence is low and the evidence suggests people are keeping their cars for longer before making a buying decision. Whether or not this is due to Brexit is hard to say, but the automotive industry needs certainty in order to maximise new car sales growth.
“Despite this, car manufacturing in the UK remains resilient due to significant volumes being exported, which is being helped by a growing global economy. Nevertheless, investment in the UK’s automotive industry remains at historic lows and the recent threats from the US about steel and car imports from the EU are a cause for concern.
“Whether the UK automotive sector will continue to be particularly important for global car manufacturers, or not, remains to be seen. So certainty for the future is crucial and cannot be underestimated when it comes to the new model investment decisions that global car manufacturers will be making this year.”
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KPMG LLP, a UK limited liability partnership, operates from 22 offices across the UK with approximately 14,500 partners and staff. The UK firm recorded a revenue of £2.2 billion in the year ended 30 September 2017. KPMG is a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax, and Advisory services. It operates in 152 countries and has 189,000 professionals working in member firms around the world. The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative ("KPMG International"), a Swiss entity. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such.