November 5, 2019 / 9:23 AM / 17 days ago

UK new car sales fall nearly 7% in October - SMMT

Imported cars are parked in a storage area at Sheerness port, Sheerness, Britain, October 24, 2017. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls/Files

LONDON (Reuters) - British new car registrations fell by 6.7% on the year in October, dragged down by a 13% fall by individual buyers, an industry group said, blaming “economic and political uncertainty” as Britain prepares for an election that will shape the outcome of Brexit.

A total of 143,251 vehicles were sold last month, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), down from 153,599 in October 2018.

“The growth in alternatively fuelled cars is very welcome, showing increasing buyer appetite for these new technologies,” SMMT Chief Executive Mike Hawes said.

Alternatively fuelled vehicles reach record 9.9% market share with 14,231 registered, SMMT said.

“The overall market remains tough, however, with October now the year’s eighth month of decline and in need of an injection of confidence,” Hawes said. “Whether the general election delivers a ‘bounce’ to the economy remains to be seen.”

Reporting by William Schomberg, editing by David Milliken

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