What you need to know

Seven in ten Irish consumers claim they could not survive without their car. This points to the importance of personal cars as a means of transport to Irish consumers, although over a third of drivers noted that environmental concerns have seen them use their car less.

Despite this concern for the environment, RoI consumers are more likely to not be interested in buying a diesel-engine car when next buying a car, while NI consumers are more inclined to opt for a petrol-engine car – suggesting that many Irish drivers are still to be convinced of the affordability and effectiveness of electric or alternative fuel vehicles.

COVID-19 has seen seven in ten Irish drivers note that they are driving less due to the virus, with the increased shift towards working at home likely to limit the need for cars among commuters.

Issues covered in this Report

This Report will examine the retailing of cars to private individuals in Ireland, and therefore excludes sales to businesses or operators of company-car fleets. It is exclusively focused on cars, and therefore excludes any discussion of the market for light commercial or other goods vehicles and motorcycles. The retailing of cars takes place through the following distribution channels:

  • Franchised new-car dealers – those under contract to specific car manufacturers or importers.

  • Multi-franchise new-car dealers – those with contracts that enable them to sell the products of more than one manufacturer.

  • Independents – dealers that sell used vehicles from various manufacturers, some of which specialise in nearly-new or pre-registered cars.

  • Second-hand dealers – those selling any make of used car, of any age.

  • Automotive auctions – these are mainly used by motor dealers to buy their own stock, but some private individuals also purchase cars through auctions.

The Market Size and Forecast section of this Report examines only new car registrations in the automotive retailing sector in NI and RoI, and excludes second-hand and used-car sales (as comprehensive data is not available), and commercial or other goods vehicles. The market shares of the top-selling car brands and engine types are also covered in this section.

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