Motors

VW slides as Hyundai prospers

Hyundai's new Tucson model has got off to a flying start, topping the Northern Ireland registration charts in November

REGISTRATIONS of new Volkswagen models crashed by 20 per cent in November, the first month in which the impact of the company's admission that it cheated diesel emissions tests could be gauged, writes William Scholes.

It was a disastrous month for the Volkswagen Group. While the total UK market grew by 3.8 per cent compared to November 2014, registrations at VW's sister brands Audi, Skoda and Seat also slumped.

Audi's market share fell 4.4 per cent, Skoda's by 11 per cent and Seat by 23.8 per cent.

The VW Group is still the biggest player in the UK car market: in November, it took a 17.6 per cent market share. In November 2014, 21.3 per cent of new cars registered in the UK wore either a Volkswagen, Audi, Skoda or Seat badge.

Taken together, year-to-date registrations of Volkswagen, Audi, Skoda and Seat models are up 2.2 per cent this year compared to the same period last year.

However, that growth is modest compared to the 6.2 per cent by which the total UK market has grown during the same period, according to figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.

VW has revealed details of the modifications it wants to make to cars fitted with the 1.6-litre and 2.0-litre diesel engines affected by its emissions con, but it clearly has much work to do to restore its reputation.

The Volkswagen Golf still elbowed its way into fourth place in the Northern Ireland top 10 for November, but the star performer was Hyundai's new Tucson model, which easily topped the table.

Another notable performer was the Kia Sportage in eighth place - a strong showing for a model facing aggressive competition and which is soon to be replaced.

Top 10 new car registrations in Northern Ireland in November 2015

1. Hyundai Tucson - 111

2. Ford Kuga - 93

3. Vauxhall Insignia - 91

4. Volkswagen Golf - 90

5. Ford Fiesta - 89

6. Vauxhall Mokka - 79

7. Vauxhall Corsa - 75

8. Kia Sportage - 69

9. Ford Focus - 67

10. Fiat 500 - 61

*Source: SMMT

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