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New car registrations up for 2016

THE number of new cars registered in Clare for 2016 has increased ahead of the national average, with 17.98% more cars sold than in 2015.

Statistics released this week by the Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI) show that new car registrations for 2016 finished ahead of the previous year. There were 3,150 new car registrations in County Clare, up from 2,670 in 2015.

Alan Nolan, director general of SIMI, said new car registrations finished at 146,600 for the full year, making it the highest year for new car registrations since 2008.

“Despite some slowing in the second half of the year, the numbers are in line with expectations at the start of 2016 and underline the continued growth and buoyancy in the economy. Used car imports have also seen growth, partly due to the strong economic recovery, but also driven by short supply of 2009-2013 Irish used cars and the strengthening of the Euro against sterling following the Brexit Referendum,” he said.

Almost 50% of imported used cars were between three and five years old, with almost another 40% more than six years old.

“Commercial vehicle registrations, which perhaps best reflect the level of activity in the economy, were also significantly up on 2015, with light commercial vehicle registrations finishing 18.3% up and heavy commercial vehicle registrations 31.3% ahead of last year,” he noted.

Mr Nolan said the industry is anticipating a continuation of the strong performance seen during 2016 for the year ahead and is projecting similar registration numbers.

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