Europe: 2014 UK new car registrations the best in a decade image

British new car sales managed to reach their best evolution since 2014, managing to highlight the country as one of the few bright spots on a shady continental auto market recovery.

According to the chief of the country’s industry body, the positive outlook should be passed on to the forecasts this year, previewing a level of sales at least on par with the total recorded last year. Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), calls 2014 deliveries “incredibly strong, stronger than expected,” buoyed by rising consumer confidence triggered by the overall British economy recovery and the continued availability of cheap credit. UK’s car sales soared by almost 10 percent (9.3%) overall in 2014 to their best level in ten years – 2.476 million units. The British auto industry has kept the country as European Union’s second-biggest auto market, trailing only Germany’s level (slightly above 3 million vehicles).

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders’ chief said that any more increases into 2015 could level off as the delivery rate is now well above historic average rates. The forecast for the year is of 2-3 percent growth, while automakers were even more conservative – in the 1-2 percent region. Among the EU countries – with an overall growth rate of about 5.7 percent in 2014 – only Spain managed to surpass Britain’s growth rate, hitting a double-digit increase as the government continues to support the industry with a car scrappage program.

Via Reuters