LONDON (Reuters) -- The U.K. today joined other Western European countries in reporting a big rise in new-car sales in October.
Car sales in Britain rose an annual 31.6 percent in October, their fourth consecutive rise, helped by a government incentive scheme, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders said.
The industry body said there were 168,942 cars sold last month.
The government introduced a scrappage scheme earlier this year which gives drivers 2,000 pounds ($1,600) to trade in cars more than 10 years old against a more fuel-efficient newer model.
The scheme, co-funded by the car industry, has proved popular and the government agreed last month to boost funding for the venture to include an additional 100,000 vehicles.
"October has seen this year's biggest monthly increase in registrations with the successful scrappage scheme accounting for over 20 percent of them," said Paul Everitt, SMMT chief executive.
Germany's new-car market grew by 24 percent in October even after a car scrapping scheme for old autos ran out of money in September, the VDIK foreign carmaker association said on Tuesday.
Spanish car sales jumped 26.4 percent last month while French new passenger car sales rose 20.1 percent. Italy's Transport Ministry said new-car registrations for October rose 15.69%.