Total new car registrations in Ireland are down 6.8% in 2019, with 117,100 cars registered compared to 125,671.
The sale of electric cars almost tripled from 2018 to 2019 with the number of registered EV's jumping from 1,233 to 3,444.
Despite the massive growth, it accounts for only a 2.9% increase in market share for EVs.
Other stats released by the Society of the Irish Motor Industry reveal that diesel remains the most popular engine type, but hybrid, electric and plug-in hybrid made huge gains in 2019.
Of all new cars registered in 2019:
Imported used cars reached record numbers for the second year in a row with 113,926 being registered in 2019. This marks a 13.1% increase on the 100,755 in 2018.
Automatic transmissions are gaining in popularity and saw a 22% increase in 2019 while manuals saw a drop of 17%.
Grey remains the top-selling colour, a title it has held for the past four years, while the hatchback ins Ireland's most popular body type.
Brian Cooke, SIMI director general said that 2019 was "a disappointing year" citing the increasing number of imports as having a "dampening impact" on new car sales.
He said: "This decline is in part is attributable to the record levels of used imports, which for a second consecutive year exceeded 100,000."
Mr Cooke encourages people to support both "employment and economic activity" in their own communities in 2020.
He said: "For consumers looking to change their car this year new or used, SIMI’s advice is to shop around and look to buy from your local dealer."
He added: "2020 marks the start of the new 201 sales period with the Industry firmly focused on January and on the first quarter which is the key selling period.
"The new car market continues to be hugely competitive with generous incentives to buy a new car across all brands and all market segments."