Cheap car leasing helps new car sales rise by 10 per cent in first half of 2018

New figures have revealed that the UK’s car leasing and sales industry continues to defy the difficult economic conditions. New car registrations in the first six months of 2018 increased by over 10 per cent on last year’s total, with the availability of cheap car leasing and a drive for more fuel efficient vehicles boosting car sales.

With some stunning car leasing, contract hire and finance deals available, it’s rarely been cheaper to buy or lease a new car. Keep reading to find out more about the UK’s booming new car market and how car leasing deals are helping drivers get a great deal.

Drivers looking for fuel efficient cars and cheap car leasing deals

Auto Express reports that new car sales so far in 2018 have reached 1,163,623 units. The UK new car market also saw its 16th successive monthly rise in June, growing 13.4 per cent to 214,957 units.

Retail sales saw a substantial increase in market share with a 21.3 per cent increase over last year, taking total sales up to 96,931 units. However, it was ‘alternatively fuelled vehicles’ (AFVs) which saw the biggest change in market share. 26.2 per cent more AFVs were sold in the first six months of 2018 than the equivalent period last year, representing 3,131 sales. And, although falling by 3.4 per cent, fleet sales still retain overall majority of the market with a 50.2 per cent share.

Experts have identified two main reasons why car sales continue to rise. First, drivers are increasingly keen to switch to more fuel efficient cars to combat the rise in fuel prices. 20 per cent more fuel efficient petrol engine cars were sold in the first six months of 2018 than in the same period in 2017. And, the average CO2 output has fallen to 129.1g/km in the first half of 2018, down 3.7 per cent over this time last year.

Second, cheap car leasing and car finance deals are offering new car customers excellent value. In many cases it can be cheaper to lease a new car than buy a nearly new used car and these great contract hire and hire purchase deals have proved attractive to buyers.

With car sales rising, what are the most popular brands? We look at the figures next.

Ford continues to dominate car leasing and sales

According to the latest new car sales figures, Ford is continuing to dominate the new car market. The Ford Fiesta topped the UK new car sales charts in the first half of 2018 with 63,040 sales while the Ford Focus was in second position with 47,675 sales. The Vauxhall Corsa came in third position with 46,147 sales.

Other top 10 finishers include the Vauxhall Astra, VW Golf, Nissan Qashqai and VW Polo. Auto Express reports that ‘premium brands like BMW are also proving to be popular with the 1 Series and 3 Series also making the top 10.’

A newcomer to the new car leasing and sales lists in 2018 is Dacia. The Romanian based car manufacturer has been owned by Renault since 1999 and offers the lowest cost new car in the UK. So far in 2018, Dacia have sold 6,994 units which means they are already selling more cars than more established manufactures such as Alfa Romeo, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Lexus, Mitsubishi and Subaru.