Toyota UK recalls result in 1.8% fall in market share

Toyota’s UK market share only fell by 0.47% in February compared to the same time last year despite its nationwide recall crisis, according to the latest Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) figures.

Toyota Yaris
Toyota Yaris

Comparing new sales figures for February 2009 and February 2010, Toyota actually sold more cars, 3,489 compared to 2,981 in the previous year. Its market share fell from 5.48% to 5.01%.

The marque saw its overall share for 2010 fall by 1.8% compared to 2009, falling from 6.81% to 5.04%, but has sold 10,785 cars to date this year.

Following the recall crisis, the marque had feared its brand damage could cost it up to £2m in lost sales. Toyota has continued with its reassurance marketing push and has recently taken out a new series of full page newspaper adverts headlined “We’re pulling together to put things right”.

Nationwide, the new car market climbed 26.4% in February to 68,686 units, with the scrappage scheme accounting for 19.6% of the February new car market.

The SMMT is now urging the government to defer new car tax rises and boost business confidence post-scrappage.

“Scrappage has generated eight consecutive months of growth in the new car market and we expect its benefits to stretch beyond the scheme’s closure later this month,” says SMMT chief executive, Paul Everitt.

“Industry continues to face challenging market conditions, but positive trends in the fleet and business sectors suggest that negative impacts can be minimised. Strengthening business and consumer confidence remains industry’s priority. A clear and consistent approach to CO2 based taxation and improved access to affordable credit are essential elements in sustaining recovery in the new car market.”

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