The Society of the Irish Motor Industry has again called on the Government to reduce Vehicle Registration Tax (VRT) in this month's Budget.

SIMI said a cut in VRT would protect the 40,000 people employed in the motor industry, sustain business and stimulate new car sales while it would also help to decrease emissions from transport and protect Exchequer Revenues.

Meanwhile, SIMI said that new car registrations for the month of September raced 66.3% higher to 5,685 when compared to September 2019 when 3,418 cars were registered. 

But it noted that total registrations so far this year to date remain 25.8% lower than the same time last year, coming in at 84,535 compared to 113,945 in 2019.

SIMI also said that used car imports for September fell by 6.8%, while imports for the year so far are down 40.3% to 49,190 from 82,435 last year.

September also saw a huge jump in the number of electric vehicles registered with the numbers rising by 477% to 664 compared to 115 in September last year.

Brian Cooke, SIMI Director General, said that September represents the first month this year to see an increase for new vehicle registrations, which can be attributed to catch up from the previous eight months of declining sales. 

"Year to date - a far more accurate barometer - sees a reduction for the fourth consecutive year leaving new car sales at recessionary levels, merely 50% of what we should be achieving in a normal functioning new car market," Mr Cooke added.

SIMI said that the top selling car in September was the Volkswagen ID. 

Today's figures show that the top five selling car brands so far this year are Volkswagen, Toyota, Hyundai, Skoda and Ford.

The five top car models so far this year are the Toyota Corolla, the Hyundai Tucson, the Volkswagen Tiguan, the Ford Focus and the Hyundai Kona.