New car sales in the UK rose 26.4 per cent year on year in February, the eighth consecutive month of growth in the sector.
The most significant growth was in the private sector as buyers took advantage of the scrappage incentive scheme, which will finish at the end of March. There was also growth in the fleet and business sectors.
A total of 68,686 cars were sold in the UK last month and 19.6 per cent of those sold were under scrappage.
The SMMT’s chief executive said a consistent approach to CO2-based taxation from the government and access to affordable credit for buyers were important if sales were to continue to rise.
“Scrappage has generated eight consecutive months of growth in the new car market and we expect its benefits to stretch beyond the scheme’s closure later this month,” he said.
“Industry continues to face challenging market conditions, but positive trends in the fleet and business sectors suggest that negative impacts can be minimised. Strengthening business and consumer confidence remains industry’s priority.
A clear and consistent approach to CO2-based taxation and improved access to affordable credit are essential elements in sustaining recovery in the new car market.”
The UK’s top-selling car last month was Ford Fiesta, followed by the Ford Focus and the Volkswagen Golf.