Diesel car sales declined by a quarter pushing the overall new car market down despite growth by petrol and alternatively fuelled new cars in January. The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) reported that 163,615 new cars were driven off forecourts in January, a 6.3% fall compared with the same month in 2017.
Registrations of petrol and alternatively fuelled vehicles (AFVs) increased, up 8.5% and 23.9% respectively. However, this failed to offset the decline in demand for new diesels, which fell 25.6% as confusion over government policy continued to affect purchasing. Market share for diesels fell from 45.2% in January 2017 to 35.9% for January 2018, while petrol cars increased from 50.6% to 58.6%.