Almost half a million new cars were sold in the UK last month, new figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) have revealed.
In total, 492,774 new cars were sold in March, the highest number since 1999 and up by 6% on the same period last year. Fleet buyers continue to drive growth, accounting for 44.5% of the last month's UK new car sales.
Sales of alternatively fuelled vehicles, including plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles, also continue to rise, with 14,335 units sold in March - a rise of more than 60% on the same period in 2014.
The SMMT says the 37th consecutive month of growth is down to a continuing demand for newer, more fuel-efficient models and advanced technologies.
SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes said: “The best month this century for new car registrations is a welcome boost for the UK’s thriving automotive sector. The challenge for a new government and industry will be to maintain this momentum and to strengthen Britain’s manufacturing capabilities through continued investment, innovation and policies which maintain our global competitiveness.”
UK’s best-selling cars in March 2015
1 - Ford Fiesta 27,034 units sold
2 - Vauxhall Corsa 19,391
3 - Ford Focus 15,442
4 - Nissan Qashqai 12,210
5 - Volkswagen Golf 11,871
6 - Volkswagen Polo 10,038
7 - Vauxhall Astra 9617