Fleet News

Diesel onslaught shows no signs of slowdown

DIESEL is in demand more than ever in the new car market, with latest figures showing sales increased for the 29th consecutive period last month.

They accounted for 25.7% of car sales last month, up by 6.2% on the same period last year. Year-on-year diesel registrations are up to 73,374 units, a 9.5% increase, figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders show.

Experts at the organisation believe diesel will account for 30% of overall sales by 2004 and will be 28% of overall sales, equivalent to 672,000 vehicles, if there are no unexpected changes in the Budget on April 9.

Fleet diesel sales have already reached this milestone, covering 29.52% of the fleet market during February, with total sales of 12,368 units.

Ford was the best-selling diesel manufacturer last month, with 2,142 sales, down 7%, one of five manufacturers that saw sales drop. Big winners last month were Renault, with sales up 51% to 1,366, and Volvo, with sales up 52% to 349.

The Ford Focus remained the best-selling fleet diesel last month, with 875 sales, down 19%. It is the best-selling diesel so far this year, with 2,511 sales, down 16%, followed by the Ford Mondeo, with 2,455 sales, up 7.82%.

For the year-to-date, fleet diesel sales have reached 37,559, accounting for 31.3% of sales.

Ford is the best-selling fleet diesel manufacturer, with 6,283 sales, despite year-to-date demand dropping by 2.79%.

Volkswagen is second, with sales equalling the same period last year, at 5,566, while Vauxhall has so far achieved 5,556 diesel sales, a rise of 5.67%.

Peugeot's sales are down 24% to 4,915, while the biggest winner so far this year is Volvo, with demand up 72.25% to 1,111.

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