New car sales are at a ten-year high with almost 2.5 MILLION sold in 2014, figure revealed today.
An improving economy and the availability of finance deals saw more than 6,700 cars roll off forecourts around the country each day.
Every month in 2014 saw an increase, with December’s 8.7 per cent rise the 34th consecutive month of growth.
In total, 2,476,435 cars were sold – a year-on-year increase of 9.3 per cent.
The biggest selling car of 2014 was the Ford Fiesta, with 131,000 registered last year alone.
Its bigger sibling, the Ford Focus, was a distant second place – with 85,000 of the popular family hatchbacks leaving new car forecourts.
Making up the top five biggest selling cars were the Vauxhall Corsa (81,783), Volkswagen Golf (73,880) and Vauxhall Astra (59,689).
The UK sits behind Germany as the second largest new car market in the EU, with France, Italy and Spain the other nations in the top five.
And 2014 was the fourth best year for UK new car sales, with only 2002, 2003 and 2004 seeing more cars registered.
Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said 2014 was a particularly strong year for alternatively-fuelled green cars.
The number of ‘plug-in cars’ sold quadrupled from 3,586 in 2013 to 14,498 in 2014.
He said: “With a variety of new plug-in models expected in 2015, this area of the market will continue to grow significantly.
“UK new car registrations returned to pre-recession levels in 2014, as pent-up demand from the recession years combined with confidence in the economy saw consumer demand for the latest models grow consistently and strongly.”
Diesels accounted for 50.1 per cent of cars, with petrol vehicles making up 47.8 per cent. Alternative fuel vehicles made up the remaining 2.1 per cent.
The SMMT expect demand to level off in 2015.
Total sales: 2.47 million (up 9.3 per cent)
Top Ten sales:
Ford Fiesta – 131,254
Ford Focus – 85,140
Vauxhall Corsa – 81,783
Volkswagen Golf – 73,880
Vauxhall Astra – 59,689
Nissan Qashqai – 49,909
Volkswagen Polo – 48,004
Audi A3 – 45,581
Fiat 500 – 44,005
Nissan Juke – 39,263