A combination of three negative elements contributed to a downturn in both the total car market and true fleet sector in April, says Dataforce.
Three fewer business days, the usual hangover from the UK plate change plus the new vehicle excise duty (VED) all contributed to a 19.8% decline for the total market, it adds.
While true fleet suffered with a 25.1% fall, Dataforce says it can possibly take some relief from the fact that last year’s April was its highest on record since its records began in 2004.
The private market took the hardest hit with a 28.5% fall while the special channels had the highest April month on record with dealership and manufacturers contributing the most (setting their own record for April).
Within the manufacturers’ top 20 it was not doom and gloom, especially for three brands that were able to produce positive growth from a challenging month, says Dataforce.
Mercedes-Benz moved up two places into third after producing growth of 5.1%, helped by the new E‑Class more than doubling its numbers from last April.
The A-Class also took first place in true fleet model ranking, helping the manufacturer show the highest year-to-date volume growth for UK true fleet market.
Hyundai also performed well beyond last year’s April, pushing its growth rate to a 41.0%, taking it inside the top 10 (seventh place) for the second month in a row.
Three individual models had triple-digit volume growth for the month, the Tucson, Ioniq and the i10. The Ioniq has managed to outregister the iX20, i40, H1 and the Santa Fe year-to-date and is also currently ninth in the alternative fuels model ranking.
The final manufacturer to produce positive growth was Seat which posted a rise of 52.9% for April, the highest growth inside the Top 20 securing it 12th place.
The upturn was powered mainly by the Ateca that secured 24% of Seat’s volume, while the Leon and Alhambra also managed three-digit volume gains.
Seat's has also more than doubled its market share in true fleet to 2.45%, up from 1.19% a year ago.