Today, 1st July, marks the first day of the new 162 registration plate, but figures for the first six months of the year show that new car registrations have already topped 100,000 in 2016, a 23% increase on the same period in 2015 (101,338 vs. 82,337).

The month of June saw an increase of 12% (1,626) in new car registrations compared to June 2015 (1,448).

Volkswagen is Ireland’s bestselling car brand so far this year, ahead of Toyota and Hyundai.

The Toyota Yaris was the bestselling car in June 2016 but the Hyundai Tucson still holds onto its crown of Ireland’s bestselling car to date in 2016 ahead of the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus.

The top selling colour for the month of June is black, while grey is the most popular colour for the year to date.

Commercial vehicle sales maintained growth in June 2016. Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) registrations reached 18,417, up 26% overall in 2016 compared to the same period last year, and are up 9% (867) on June 2015 (799). Heavy Goods Vehicle (HGV) registrations, have witnessed a decline of -29% for the month of June 2016 (112) when compared to the same month last year (157), however registrations are up 42% year to date.

Commenting on the figures, SIMI Director General Alan Nolan said, “At the start of the year we predicted that this year’s registration numbers should reach 150,000 for the first time since 2008 and these figurers keep us on track to deliver that. From today of course the focus turns to the 162 registration period. This year promises to be the first normal year of registrations since the recession and with the range of attractive offers available across all brands we are confident that 162 will also deliver in the coming months.”

Caroline Kidd