Reports have signalled that diesel car sales have slowed significantly in January 2017. In comparison, electric and ‘alternatively-fulled vehicles’ jumped in sales by almost 20% compared with the same time last year. This is a major change in the way we buy cars. Could it be a sign that the European fascination with diesel fuelled cars is coming to an end thanks to the emissions scandal?
According to data release by SMMT (The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders), diesel car sales in percentage terms are slowing and have done for 7 of the past 8 months leading up to January 2017. Therefore, January wasn’t just a ‘blip’ for diesel powered vehicles, in fact this change has been consistent. Even petrol cars have outnumbered diesel cars, with over 50.7% of new car owners in Jan 2017 turning to petrol, rather than diesels (45.1%). The trend appears to have been motivated by the emissions scandals surrounding diesel cars when customers look at new cars. Even major cities across the globe – including London – have declared they want to ban diesel cars by 2027. We also now know more about the health risks associated with diesel fumes which all seem to have hit sales for this market.
Emissions scandal impacting diesel car sales?
One of the most damaging news stories for the diesel car industry in the past couple of years was the emissions scandal. Some major manufacturers admitted their diesel cars had ‘cheat devices’ inside to skew data when cars were assessed in certain test conditions. Now this has possibly taken effect on diesel car sales. Customers may have less confidence in buying diesel cars since the data presented can’t be trusted. More facts about the harm diesel emissions do to our environment, could mean that savvy car purchasers have been influenced by them.
UK diesel ‘scrappage’ scheme a possibility?
According to political rumours, there is also talk of the UK government considering a diesel scrappage scheme. This could provide a financial incentive for diesel car owners with the most pollutant types of vehicle if they trade-in their car for an environmentally friendly alternative. This is still speculation but with past UK governments known to encourage ‘green’ schemes in the past – and with pressure on lowering CO2 levels in cities – this scheme could become true.
Why did diesel cars become so popular?
Many customers in the UK were influenced by the better MPG (miles per gallon) that diesel cars give in comparison to petrol. Burning less fuel also meant car buyers assumed diesel cars were better for the environment. It’s also a very European thing to own a diesel car. In 2016, 10 million diesel cars were produced across the world. In Europe alone we bought 75% of them! There have been some government incentives for diesel cars in the past, with lower tax rates for fleet vehicles which has had it’s effect too.
Diesel car struggling to start? Need diagnostics?
A diesel engine is complex and there can be many factors to blame when it struggles to start. If you’re in Radstock or Bath, we’d be happy to help carry out some diagnostics on your car. Get in touch with our MCM Garage team on 01761 415 501 or contact us via our online form and we’ll get back to you straight away.