New Car Sales Up For 12th Successive Month
New car sales rose for the 12th successive month in the UK in February, bucking the market trend of falling demand across Europe.
There were 66,749 new registrations in February - a 7.9% increase on the February 2012 figure, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).
The performance - mostly driven by private purchases - took the year-so-far total to 210,392, which represents a 10.3% increase on the figure for the first two months of 2012.
The SMMT said that February was typically the month with the smallest sales volume as it precedes the registration plate-change in March.
It was, the organisation said, the highest growth in the private market since the end of the Scrappage Incentive Scheme in Spring 2010.
SMMT interim chief executive, Mike Baunton, said: "UK new car registrations have risen every month for the last year with February continuing the trend, growing 7.9% year-on-year boosted by the highest increase in private consumer demand since spring 2010."
"Attractive new car deals are sustaining the market. New models are delivering ever greater fuel efficiency, practicality, refinement, technology and predictable ownership costs, so motorists are seeing the benefit of new car purchases."
The Ford Focus was the most popular model, selling 3,853 vehicles last month.
The UK market has been outperforming the rest of the EU where demand has fallen - largely a result of the debt crisis.
The president of Renault and Nissan Carlos Ghosn told Sky News on Tuesday that dwindling demand in Europe was the main concern of global car-makers and over-capacity was a big issue for manufacturers.