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UK saw lowest new car sales level in July since 1998

The new car sales of the UK declined by 29.5% to their lowest July level since 1998 as the ‘pingdemic’ of people self-isolating alongside supply shortages has affected the demand according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).

Whilst July 2020 saw an increase in sales by being the full month when dealerships were open throughout the UK after the initial lockdown to control the spread of the coronavirus, this year has been hit by a chip shortage in the industry and people having to self-isolate due to the continued spread of COVID-19.

As cases increased month, hundreds of thousands of people were being “pinged” by the National Health Service’s contact-tracing app to isolate for 10 days, although it has now been tweaked to decrease the numbers contacted.

A total of 123,296 vehicles were registered in July, according to the SMMT, which said it is marginally downgrading its full-year forecast to about 1.82 million cars.

“The next few weeks will see changes to self-isolation policies which will hopefully help those companies throughout the industry dealing with staff absences, but the semiconductor shortage is likely to remain an issue until at least the rest of the year,” SMMT CEO Mike Hawes said.

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