THE latest figures from the Motorcheck.ie car index show that an early enthusiasm by new car buyers in Limerick has since fallen back to levels similar to that of 2010.
New car registrations had got off to a promising start with figures for January showing a 19 per cent increase on 2010. Numbers for February however demonstrated an immediate decline finishing just 11 per cent ahead of the previous year and the latest statistics for March show a significant drop - of 4.2 per cent for the same period last year.
Overall, statistics for the year report an increase of 10 per cent overall for the first quarter in the county but industry analysts Motorcheck.ie suggest that 2011 will prove to be another difficult year for car dealers.
Commenting on the latest results Shane Teskey, Managing Director of Motorcheck.ie said a lack of car finance is having a knock on effect in the industry.
“2011 has been a very difficult year for the leasing industry in particular. A lack of finance facilities for Contract Hire (the preferred method for financing company cars) has meant that smaller leasing companies are unable to fulfill actual orders on their books. Until this is addressed new car registrations for both private consumers and business customers will continue to be seriously hampered”.
Toyota is the most popular make in the county with 18 per cent of all registrations. Ford comes in second place with 12 per cent followed closely by Volkswagen in third position with 11 per cent.
The most popular Model is the Toyota Avensis with 82 LK registrations, The Toyota Corolla comes close with 80 and the Nissan Qashqai continues to be popular with 65 registrations.