TTAC Called It: UK New Car Market Tanks

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago

Back when GM and Ford claimed that foreign sales would keep them afloat long enough to patch their hulls, turn their ships around and avoid reefs of their own making, TTAC called bullshit. First, we pointed out that the domestics’ American losses were simply too large to sustain with foreign profits. Second, we said overseas car markets were hardly immune to the forces sending the States into the doldrums. And so… The Daily Telegraph reports that rising petrol prices have lowered UK vehicle sales to their lowest level since England won the World Cup against Germany in 1966. “The latest sales figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) showed that the number of new cars registered last month was down 18.6 per cent on the same period last year. Worst hit were luxury marques and 4x4s, with monthly sales of Aston Martin cars down by two thirds in a year, Land Rover suffering a 58 per cent drop and demand for Porsche models 58 per cent lower than August 2007.” Worse– much worse– is yet to come. “The car market is now in real pain, real free-fall,” Professor Garel Rhys, director of the Centre for Automotive Industry Research at Cardiff University, told the Torygraph. “It is not just the private buyers who are not buying it is also the companies and the fleet side who have decided to pull their horns in, it is a sign of pretty awful times ahead.” Oh, and The Times of India says “Sluggish outlook in India has forced Japanese car major Toyota to revise and extend further its market share target from the country by as much as 5 years.”

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  • Landcrusher Landcrusher on Sep 06, 2008

    When America sneezes, all the western socialist countries get a cold. Their models simply rely on us for that little margin they need to keep their socialism from tipping them into permanent doldrums. We reduce their defense needs, buy their products, keep up incentive for innovation, and give the world markets a good cushion. They have a decent deal going except that if we copy them, the whole game will end with a depression for all of us.

  • Davey49 Davey49 on Sep 06, 2008

    I'm surprised that nobody mentions the fact that everyone bought cars less than 10 years ago and those cars are still in perfect shape. Cars are so well made these days that there is no reason to buy new ones. Foreign sales= China, India and Russia

  • Z31 Z31 on Sep 06, 2008
    davey49 : I’m surprised that nobody mentions the fact that everyone bought cars less than 10 years ago and those cars are still in perfect shape. I was unaware every car sold in the UK was japanese, and that there had been no car crashes in the past decade.

  • Capeplates Capeplates on Sep 07, 2008

    It's been noticeable that there are fewer new registration plates showing on the UK Highways - the annual rush to be the first with the new plates has taken a nosedive!