New car sales are still 11 per cent behind their pre-Covid levels, although new car registrations hit 101,745 by the end of September. The figures are largely in line with last year, with those in the motor trade blaming ongoing supply issues for curtailing a growth in sales.
Despite difficulties in getting new cars into the State, the move to electric continues apace with electric vehicles, plug-in hybrids and hybrids now accounting for a combined market share of 40.76 per cent.
So far this year 14,513 new electric cars have been registered, compared to 7,819 on the same period in 2021,an increase of 85.6 per cent.
Petrol remains the dominant choice with 30.09 per cent of the market, following by diesel with 26.99 per cent. However, hybrid cars now make up 19.67 of the new car sales, full-electric models comprise 14.30 per cent and Plug-in Electric Hybrid make up 6.79 per cent.
The shortage of new car stock is compounded by a drop in used car imports, which are down 26.8 per cent on this time last year, to 37,418.
According to Brian Cooke, Director General of the Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI): "New vehicle registrations, hampered by global supply issues, continue to remain challenging."
Toyota remains the best-selling car brand, with the Hyundai Tucson the most popular new car for 2021. The best-selling EV is the Volkswagen ID.4, followed by the Hyundai Ioniq 5.
In the commercial market, normally a bellwether for wider economic activity, sales of new Light Commercial vehicles (LCV) are down 20.5 per cent on last year at 20,974, while new HGV (Heavy Goods Vehicle) registrations are down 6.3 per cent at 2,120.