UK car sales fell in July as squeezed consumers held back on big-ticket purchases, with sales of new cars falling 6.6 per cent, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).
New UK car registrations were down 9.3 per cent on the year, marking a fourth successive monthly decline, the figures showed.
Howard Archer, chief economic adviser to the EY Item Club, said: "This certainly ties in with the weakened July GfK consumer confidence survey."
The GfK poll found consumer confidence dropped to a negative reading of 12 in July, its joint-lowest since December 2013.
Businesses becoming cautious
Car sales figures for July also showed a 10.1 per cent drop in new sales in the fleet sector, which has previously performed relatively well.
Archer suggested that this will be of particular concern .
“It could be a sign that businesses are becoming more reluctant to replace or add to their fleets amid heightened economic and political uncertainties."