New tractor registrations start second half of year strongly
The most recent new tractor registration figures issued by the Farm Tractor & Machinery Trade Association (FTMTA) cover the first seven months of the year and record a 5% year on year increase in registrations of new tractors when compared with the same period in 2018. The July figures were eagerly awaited as the month has become a very important one for tractor registrations since the introduction of the split year registration system in 2013.
July saw a healthy 13% increase over the same month of last year with 281 units registered. The July figure was the highest for the month since 2008 when 314 tractors were registered; to put that figure in context, a total of 4,531 tractors were registered in 2008 whereas the annual total of new tractors registered has not reached the 2,000 unit level since. There have been a total of 1,659 new registrations during the first seven months of 2019, up 86 units or some 5% on last year. The level of improvement in the market in 2018 and so far this year gives grounds to hope that the market may finally get above the 2,000 unit mark once again during 2019.
The three counties with the highest levels of registrations so far this year continue to be Cork, Tipperary and Wexford with 223, 156 and 116 units registered respectively to the end of July as against corresponding levels of 210, 123 and 124 in 2018.
The very obvious trend towards higher horse power tractors has continued during 2019 with 92% of all new tractors registered during the first seven months having in excess of 100hp, 60% having more than 120hp and 32% having more than 150hp.
Telehandler registrations also enjoyed a good month in July with 54 units registered, up from 31 in July of 2018. The total number of such machines registered during the first seven months is up 45% on 2018 at 373 units, just one machine below the total number registered in the full year of 2018.
Registrations of wheeled loaders have fallen significantly on 2018 with a total of 78 units registered at the end of July, down 15 units year on year. Six such machines were registered during July as against 15 last year.
Backhoe loader registrations are down slightly for the first seven months at 52 units, a reduction of one unit of 2018. Eleven machines were registered during July versus 13 last year.
Combine harvester registrations are at their highest level since 2014 with 44 units registered, up from 32 machines in 2018 and a low of 20 machines as recently as 2017. Given that the registration figures cover the period to the end of July it seems likely that there will be few if any additional combine registrations to follow. A total of 24 used imported combines were also registered to the end of July which is the same as the total number of used combine registrations during all of 2018.
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