European new-car sales are showing a strong finish to 2015 as December registrations rose in the key markets of Germany, France, Italy and Spain.
Registrations in Germany, Europe's biggest market, increased 7.7 percent year-on-year to 247,000 last month, according to an industry source.
In France, sales in December were up 13 percent to 183,726, while in Italian registrations, sales increased by 19 percent to 103,395. Spanish registrations jumped 21 percent to 88,609, boosted by a government-backed scrappage scheme that has been extended to the middle of this year.
Full-year sales show that Europe's rebound is continuing, although industry watchers say much of the growth is fueled by incentives.
In Germany, registrations in 2015 rose 5.6 percent to 3.21 million; France climbed 6.8 percent to 1.91 million; Italy sales jumped 16 percent to 1.57 million, while Spain surged 21 percent to 1.03 million.
Germany's KBA motor transport authority is due to publish official sales data later today. UK registrations will be released later this week.
Market researchers Evercore ISI expects the annualized selling rate for European sales for 2015 to finish at about 14.5 million. This year should see a 2.8 percent rise in Europe's car sales, Evercore ISI analyst Arndt Ellinghort said.
Reuters contributed to this report