Sales of new cars already more than final total for 2013
MORE new cars have been sold to date this year than for the entirity of 2013.
According to Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI), 74,911 new cars have been sold up to July 9.
This represents a 28pc increase on the same period last year and is already ahead of the full year 2013.
Some 4,264 new cars were registered on Wednesday, the first day of the new '142' registration plate, a 120pc increase on the 1,924 which were registered on the same day in 2013.
SIMI director Alan Nolan said: "With the offers that are available for the month of July, it looks like it's going to be the busiest July for car sales for many years."
However, Mr Nolan cautioned that the Irish motoring industry is still in a precarious position despite the first day of the '142' plate being the best day for car sales since before the recession.
"We still need to see this improvement in context, though. It is still potentially fragile and even with the growth we have seen, we are still likely to finish around 60pc of the pre-recession market," he said.
Veteran car seller and former TV Apprentice boss Bill Cullen welcomed the rising market and said he is enjoying being back in the business.
Bill (72), re-entered the car industry with a new SsangYong dealership this year after his long-time association with Renault ended in 2012 by mutual agreement.
He told the Herald he is "very happy" with how sales are going and added: "I'm really enjoying my time on the showroom floor each day meeting and greeting everybody and making everyone a nice cup of tea with a cream bun.
"The great thing about the increase in national car sales is that we're going to have so many amazing deals in premier second-hand cars over the coming weeks and months which gives the customer huge choice."
The SIMI Second Quarter Review is due out next Tuesday.