PARIS -- French car sales rose 5.8 percent in December, closing a second consecutive year of strong growth in Europe's third-biggest auto market.
Registrations rose to 194,388 cars last month from 183,720 a year earlier, the CCFA industry association said on Sunday.
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles had the biggest sales gain last month with volume rising 26 percent, helped by a 30 percent increase in Fiat brand sales and a 30 percent rise in Alfa Romeo sales.
Toyota also had a strong month with sales of Toyota and Lexus vehicles rising by 19 percent.
Volkswagen Group sales jumped by 18 percent, led by a 22 percent gain at Skoda, a 19 percent rise in Audi sales and a 15 percent rise in VW brand's volume.
Both French carmakers underperformed the market expansion, with Renault registrations increasing a modest 0.6 percent and PSA Group down 3.5 percent.
Ford Motor sales dropped by 1 percent while volume at General Motors' Opel brand was flat.
- Download PDF, above right, for December and 2016 sales by automaker and brand.
Full-year sales topped 2 million, a 5.1 percent increase from 2015. The French market, which ranks behind Germany and Britain by volume, has been in recovery since 2015, when car sales rose 6.8 percent. That followed four straight years of decline and an almost flat 2014.
Delivery van registrations rose 3.2 percent in December and 8.1 percent over the year, the CCFA also said. Light vehicle sales, which combine vans and cars, rose 5.6 percent in 2016.
Reuters contributed to this report