2021 started well for the farm machinery industry in Ireland with new tractor registrations up by 11% compared with January 2020. The January 2021 registration figures issued by the Farm Tractor & Machinery Trade Association (FTMTA) indicate a strong start to the year for registrations of both new and used import tractors.
The FTMTA figures show that there were 478 new tractors registered during the month of January 2021. This is the highest level of January registrations since 2009 when 551 units were registered in January of that year. The January 2021 registrations are up 11% on the 429 units registered in 2020.
All counties saw some new tractors registered during January which is not always the case. The three counties with the highest levels of registrations were Cork, Tipperary and Galway with 67, 44 and 30 units registered respectively. Wicklow was the county with the lowest level of registrations with just 2 units.
The 101hp to 120hp power band range continued to account for the highest level of registrations with 163 units or over 34% of all registrations in January. During the month 94% of all tractors registered were rated at over 100hp, 60% over 120hp and 28% over 150hp.
Registrations of used imported tractors continued the strong performance seen throughout 2020. The FTMTA figures show that 508 used tractors were imported and registered for the first time in Ireland during January 2021. This is the highest monthly number of used tractor registrations seen in many years. The equivalent figure in January of last year was 300 units. It seems likely that many of the used import tractors registered last month were units that were brought into the country in late 2020 in advance of the post-Brexit imposition of customs and import regulations.
Registrations of new UTV’s in January 2021 came in at 31 units, compared with 28 units in 2020. There were 10 used UTV imported in 2021 compared with 8 in 2020.
Telescopic loader registrations were impacted quite severely in 2020 by the public health restrictions and consequent effects on much construction and commercial activity. That trend continued in January with 67 new machines registered which was a 38% decrease on the 108 units of a year previously.
Wheeled loader registrations had a strong 2020 with a 59% increase on 2019 to 135 units. That trend had started with a significant 25 units registered in January of 2020 so some drop was always likely but a highly credible 16 units were still registered in this January.
Backhoe loader registrations dropped in 2020 to just 32 units from 66 in 2019, impacted by restrictions on construction activity. FTMTA reported a welcome recovery in backhoe registrations in January with 9 units registered, up from 6 units in the same month last year.