New car registrations fell slightly in February, with demand down by just 0.3 per cent according to figures from the SMMT.
Year-to-date registrations sit at 257,679, while a total of 83,395 cars were registered in February.
February is a month not usually associated with high demand, as registrations usually fall before the number plate change in March. However, alternatively fuelled vehicles were highly popular – with 3,308 cars registered in February, up a massive 48.9 per cent on 2016.
Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: “February is traditionally one of the quietest months of the year and a steady performance was expected following another year of record growth in 2016.
“We expect to see the market bounce back in March as buyers take advantage of the new ’17-plate, as well as the last chance to buy a car eligible for current lower VED rates before they change on 1 April.”
The best-selling cars in February were the Ford Fiesta with 4,282 registrations, followed by the Volkswagen Golf and Vauxhall Astra with 2,949 and 2,170 respectively.
The most popular year-to-date cars remain similar, with the Ford Fiesta out on top with 12,777 registrations and the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus coming in second and third place respectively.