MADRID - Sales increased 11.3 percent and passed the one million mark, at 1,013,754.
Low inflation and economic growth stimulated sales. In addition, the PREVER scrapping incentive accounted for 125,800 new registrations. About 85 percent of sales were to individuals.
The Spanish market is very evenly divided. Renault led with a share of 12.8 percent, and Peugeot was sixth at 10.6. In the middle were Seat, Citroen, Opel and Ford.
PSA was the leading group, aided by a 25.8 percent increase for the Citroen brand.
Seat increased 22.9 percent. Big gainers among the smaller marques were Hyundai (61.5), Nissan (48.5) and Toyota (25.2).
The Seat Ibiza, with over 60,000 sales, was the sales leader by mere hundreds after a special effort in December to recover the leadership that the Renault Megane took briefly. The Opel Vectra beat the Citroen Xantia in the upper-medium segment only after a last-minute rush.
Diesel cars gained 4.0 points of share, taking 41.5 percent of the market. Off-road cars, with 64,600 sales, improved their 1996 figure by 12.5 percent.