LONDON, March 5 (Reuters) - British new car registrations fell by an annual 2.8 percent in February, an industry body said on Monday, hit by a further slump in the sales of diesel vehicles which politicians have targeted over air quality concerns.
Total new sales stood at 80,805 units, with demand for diesel vehicles declining by an annual 23.5 percent, while petrol cars rose 14.4 percent, according to data from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.
“Although the new car market has dipped, it remains at a good level despite the drop in demand for diesel,” SMMT Chief Executive Mike Hawes said.
A further softening in sales was expected in March, reflecting a surge in sales in the same month last year ahead of a tax change, Hawes said. (Writing by William Schomberg Editing by Gareth Jones)