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Car sales hit new high

Car sales in Britain rose 5.1% to 185,778 vehicles in April in the strongest performance for the month since 2005, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders. The rise was at odds with some business surveys saying customers were putting off purchases ahead of the election. New car sales in 2015 so far are up 6.4% on the same point last year, at 920,366. April marked the 38th consecutive monthly increase. The sales increase was driven largely by fleet sales, which were up 9% in April. Private sales rose 2.7% while business sales were down 12.4%. Analysts said consumer appetite has been boosted by cheap finance deals, with dealers discounting significantly to maintain sales. IHS Automotive analyst Tim Urquhart said he expected UK sales to start falling next year as the current momentum was due to deals on offer.

 

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