New figures from the Central Statistics Office show a slight recovery in cars sales in June compared to April and May sales figures.
The CSO said the number of new cars licensed for the first time in June stood at 2,189, down from 3,858 the same time last year - a drop of 43.3%.
But that compares to annual declines of 90.3% and 83.7% in April and May of this year, the CSO said, as Covid-19 restrictions closed car showrooms around the country.
Meanwhile, the number of used or imported private cars licensed decreased by 53.3% compared with the same month in 2019.
Today's figures show that the number of new cars licensed in the first six months of 2020 stood at 49,184, a decrease of 36.7% from the 77,639 cars sold in the same time last year.
Comparing today's figures with the recently published Society of the Irish Motor Industry figures, the CSO said it was important to note that more than two thirds of new cars licensed in June were actually registered before the month.
The CSO said that while licensing of new petrol and diesel private cars fell by 41.7% and 41.5% in the first six months of 2020, the number of hybrid new private cars licensed increased by 1.9% to 7,343.
It noted that in the first half of 2020, electric and hybrid vehicles accounted for 18.7% of new private cars licensed, up from 11.8% in the same time in 2019.
The CSO noted that Longford had the largest proportion of new electric cars licensed in the first half of the year, followed by Wicklow and Dublin. For hybrid vehicles, Galway had the highest proportion of sales, followed by Dublin and Meath.
Today's CSO figures show that Toyota was the most popular make of new private cars licensed in the first half of 2020, followed by Volkswagen, Hyundai, Skoda and Ford.
Together these five makes represent 49% of all new private cars licensed in the six month period.