LONDON (Reuters) -- UK new-car sales rose 9 percent last year to hit their highest level in 10 years at 2.47 million, cementing the UK's place as Europe's second-largest car market, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said today.
The SMMT said sales had been bolstered by strong economic confidence, but that it expected growth in 2015 to level off, as sales were now above historic average rates.
The group’s CEO, Mike Hawes, told reporters on Tuesday that he expected UK sales growth of 2 percent to 3 percent in 2015, and that manufacturers' forecasts were in the 1 percent to 2 percent region.
Sales across the EU as a whole rose by around 6 percent in 2014, the SMMT said.
Mixed results in Europe’s top markets
All of Europe’s other top markets reported an increase in sales last year, but the results were mixed. Registrations in Germany, the region’s biggest market, rose 3 percent to 3.04 million, while third-placed France reported a rise of just 0.3 percent to 1.8 million.
Registrations in Italy rose 4 percent to 1.36 million, while sales in Spain jumped 18 percent to 855,308.
Automotive News Europe contributed to this report