Total sales last month were 155,315 – down 2% and tracking to hit 2.345 million units, down nearly 4% on 2005.
The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders predicts that December’s figures will also be low, possibly 13% down.
This is because December 2005 saw fleets rushing to register cars before the Euro IV tax deadline which created a large spike in the market.
For the year to date, fleet sales are down 1%, while business sales to fleets of 25 vehicles or fewer were down by nearly 13%. Together, fleet and business sales have made up 55.6% of new car sales so far this year.
Ford continues to dominate the fleet market, with sales up 1.9% year-to-date, again fuelled by strong demand for the Fiesta.
Vauxhall remains in second place, although its sales have fallen by 9%, due mainly to the old Corsa being in run-out and sales of the new model only just beginning.
Volkswagen is the only other manufacturer to break through the 100,000-unit barrier in fleet, up by 18% thanks to a 31% increase in Passat sales.
Elsewhere in the top 10 manufacturers’ table, Renault’s poor year continues with sales down by more than 20%, due to low sales of Megane, Laguna and Espace. Clio remains a bright spot for the brand, with sales up by nearly 18%.
Toyota is down by 6.5% and will be banking on the Corolla replacement, next year’s Auris, to reverse its predecessor’s 33% dip in sales.
Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz continue to make in-roads into the volume heartland, with sales up by 24.9%, 9.1% and 10.4% respectively.
Top 10 sales in fleet November 2006