I notice that the UK car census conducted by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) shows rising new car registrations and longer-lasting cars have combined to push up the number of cars in the UK by more than 436,000 units to 32 million in 2013.

The 1.4 per cent rise in 2013 marked the fastest rate of growth for 10 years. This saw the number of older cars rise thanks to ever-increasing reliability. Cars older than 12 years rose 11.3 per cent against 2012 with 2.06 million more cars recorded in the latest census.

Compared with a decade ago, the average age of a car increased by a full year (to 7.7 years old), as the trend grew for cars remaining on the road for longer. This fascinates me.

It also prompted me to calculate the average age of my fleet. Spread over four cars it is 25.25 years, although the week before it had actually been 26.75 years as I had bought something a bit newer.