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Extra information
For more information on this release:
E-mail: transport@cso.ie Colm Hayes +353 21 453 5263 Carlena Kearney +353 21 453 5267
For general information on CSO statistics:
information@cso.ie (+353) 21 453 5000 Visit StatCentral.ie, the portal to Ireland's official statistics On-line ISSN 2009-5678
CSO statistical release, 09 August 2017, 11am

Vehicles licensed for the first time

July 2017

 July January - July
20162017Change 20162017Change
New private cars22,46221,316-1,146-5.1% 119,952108,662-11,290-9.4%
New goods vehicles2,5602,269-291-11.4% 19,69417,091-2,603-13.2%
Total new vehicles26,48024,880-1,600-6.0% 147,804133,500-14,304-9.7%
          
Used private cars5,6377,5981,96134.8%36,41152,54316,13244.3%
Used goods vehicles9151,10619120.9%5,8188,3272,50943.1%
Total used vehicles7,3819,6782,29731.1% 47,00867,81020,80244.3%

Decrease of 5.1% in new private cars licensed in July 2017

Figure 1 VLFTM - New private cars licensed for the first time
go to full release

In July 2017, 21,316 new private cars were licensed for the first time, a decrease of 5.1% compared with July 2016. A total of 7,598 used (imported) private cars were licensed, representing a rise of 34.8% on the same month last year.

In the first seven months of 2017, 108,662 new private cars were licensed, a decrease of 9.4% compared with the same period last year. The number of used (imported) private cars licensed increased by 44.3% compared with the same period in 2016.

The licensing figures also show that: 

  • Hyundai (2,274) was the most popular make of new private cars licensed in July 2017, followed by Volkswagen (2,239), Toyota (2,187), Ford (1,991) and Nissan (1,552). Together these five makes represent just under half (48.1%) of all new private cars licensed. See table 3.
  • In the first seven months of 2017, 70,548 (64.9%) new private cars licensed were diesel, while 95.9% of new private cars licensed in the same period were in the A/B CO2 emissions bands. See table 2B.
  • The total number of vehicles licensed during July 2017 was 34,558 compared with 33,861 during the same month in 2016, an increase of 2.1%. See table 1.
  • There was an 11.4% decrease in the number of new goods vehicles licensed in July 2017 bringing the total to 2,269. 
Licensing and registration are different processes. A vehicle is licensed when a valid motor tax disc is issued for the first time whereas registration occurs when a vehicle gets its licence plate (registration number) for the first time.
Most popular makes of new cars, July 2017
Hyundai 10.7
Volkswagen 10.5
Toyota 10.3
Ford 9.3
Nissan 7.3
Other51.9
Most popular makes of new cars, July 2016
Hyundai 14.2
Volkswagen 8
Toyota 11.2
Ford 11.3
Nissan 8.3
Other46.9
Table 1: Number of vehicles licensed for the first time classified by taxation class
Taxation ClassJuly January - July
201520162017 201520162017
New vehicles
New Private Cars 21,29022,46221,316 99,950119,952108,662
New Goods Vehicles 2,4292,5602,269 15,84019,69417,091
New Tractors 185191178 1,3581,4661,316
New Motor Cycles 156205172 8711,1071,006
New Exempt Vehicles 679916798 3,8334,4474,281
New Other 155146147 9111,1381,144
Total New Vehicles 24,89426,48024,880 122,763147,804133,500
       
Used (imported) vehicles       
Used private cars 4,0755,6377,598 28,70336,41152,543
Used goods vehicles 7399151,106 5,1165,8188,327
Used tractors 130165173 1,0101,1061,550
Used motorcycles 168249313 1,0241,2701,985
Used other vehicles 353415488 2,2382,4033,405
Total used vehicles 5,4657,3819,678 38,09147,00867,810
       
Total all vehicles 30,35933,86134,558 160,854194,812201,310
Table 2A: Number of new private cars licensed for the first time by CO2 emission band and fuel type, July 2017
BandFuel TypeTotal
PetrolDieselElectricPetrol & electric hybridDiesel & electric hybridPetrol or Diesel plug-in electric hybrid
A 4,91910,4257884903316,304
B 1,9981,961039003,998
C 1994440000643
D 311250000156
E 121740000186
F 613000019
G 0100001
Not available0900009
Total7,16513,1527888803321,316
Table 2B: Number of new private cars licensed for the first time by CO2 emission band and fuel type, January-July 2017
BandFuel TypeTotal
PetrolDieselElectricPetrol & electric hybridDiesel & electric hybridPetrol or Diesel plug-in electric hybrid
A 22,54757,1464493,502113683,781
B 10,3999,90301630020,465
C 6432,13303002,779
D 1545800000734
E 636810000744
F 43750000118
G 117000018
Not available023000023
Total33,86070,5484493,6681136108,662
Table 3: Number of new and used (imported) private cars licensed for the first time by make, July 2017
MakeJuly January - July
NewUsed (imported)Total NewUsed (imported)Total
Audi 7866501,4364,3504,5598,909
BMW 5014749753,9143,1977,111
Citroen 2312084391,2601,4292,689
Dacia 661196802,7411442,885
Fiat 146521986123911,003
Ford 1,9911,0523,04310,1537,33017,483
Honda 2761834591,0511,3002,351
Hyundai 2,2744402,71410,2973,15613,453
Jaguar 452974504209713
Kia 1,0982681,3665,8941,5747,468
Land Rover 153211749061761,082
Lexus 8780167366535901
Mazda 4241215452,1388763,014
Mercedes Benz 5883539413,9442,3606,304
Mini 12371194443554997
Mitsubishi 9745142552298850
Nissan 1,5524151,9678,9252,82411,749
Opel 1,07611,0775,42095,429
Peugeot 7133081,0213,0882,1005,188
Renault 1,5071611,6687,1821,1718,353
Seat 666947602,8836513,534
Skoda 1,3502011,5517,0631,2608,323
Ssangyong 1001078987
Subaru 3233512354177
Suzuki 215372521,0572651,322
Toyota 2,1875942,78110,7673,97214,739
Vauxhall 046346323,5733,575
Volkswagen 2,2391,0063,24511,3286,95218,280
Volvo 2481754231,4281,0902,518
Other 4074114193525718
Total 21,3167,59828,914 108,66252,543161,205
The information in this table is available in much greater detail in Databases (see Statbank link below)

Background Notes

Source

The vehicle licensing figures are compiled from data supplied by the Driver and Vehicle Computer Services Division of the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport. The data provide details on the number of private cars, goods vehicles, motor cycles and other vehicles licensed for the first time in each city and county council, classified by make and size, during a given month.

History

The release titled 'Vehicles Licensed for the First Time' commenced in January 1993. It replaced the series previously published as 'Particulars of Vehicles Registered and Licensed for the First Time'.

In January 1993, separate systems for vehicle registration and licensing were introduced. The Office of the Revenue Commissioners became responsible for the compilation of vehicle registrations while the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government retained responsibility for vehicle licensing. In January 2008, responsibility for vehicle licensing was transferred to the Department of Transport (which later became the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport).

Motor tax charges are determined on the basis of CO2 emission level (using seven CO2 bands) for all new cars registered from 1 July 2008.

The licensing process where applicable follows the registration process.

Vehicle Licensing versus Vehicle Registration

The CSO produces vehicle licensing statistics on a monthly basis. Vehicle registration data has not been published on the CSO statbank since June 2010.

Registration and licensing figures may differ in a given month for a number of reasons, some of which are outlined below:

  • Vehicles which under the previous system would have been licensed in the latter part of a particular month may not now be licensed until a later month because of the time lapse between registration and first licensing.
  • Registered vehicles which are not used in a public place (e.g. tractors for use exclusively on the land) may not need to be licensed.

The question is often asked, which reflects better vehicle sales, licensing figures or registration figures?

In practice, on a monthly basis, the licensing data is probably a better reflection of sales. In some cases, a vehicle may be registered by a dealership in advance of a sale. Whereas, typically, vehicles are only licensed at the point of sale. However, if a vehicle is purchased towards the end of a month, the buyer may wish to defer collecting and licensing it until the start of the following month. So the issue is not clear-cut.

From 31 October 1999, detailed information on agricultural vehicles is no longer published in accordance with Commission Decision 92/157/EEC as upheld on 28 May 1998.

Definitions

Private cars:  The term 'private cars' in this release, refers to privately licensed vehicles which include hire, fleet and certain commercial vehicles.

New and used vehicles:  The term 'new vehicles' refers to new vehicles which are licensed for use in a public place, in this country, for the first time. 'Used vehicles' refers to used vehicles which are licensed for use in a public place, in this country, for the first time. In the main used vehicles are imported.

Exempt:  The term 'exempt vehicles' in this release, refers to vehicles which are licensed for the first time but are exempt from liability to pay road tax.

Exempt vehicles can be divided into four main categories:

  • State-owned
  • Diplomatic
  • Fire services
  • Disabled Drivers

Electric hybrid:  means a vehicle that derives its motive power from a combination of an electric motor and an internal combustion engine and is capable of being driven on electric propulsion alone for a material part of its normal driving cycle.

Plug-in electric hybrid:  means a vehicle that derives its motive power from a combination of an electric motor and an internal combustion engine, where the electric motor derives its power from a battery that may be charged from the internal combustion engine and an alternating current (AC) electric mains supply and is capable of being driven on electric propulsion alone for a material part of its normal driving cycle.

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