Car makers up forecast for 2014 sales as economy accelerates

BRITAIN’S motor industry yesterday raised its forecasts for 2014 sales, after strong first-half sales, predicting 2.45m new cars would be sold this year, 8.1 per cent more than in 2013.

The Society of Motor Manufact­urers and Traders (SMMT) had previously forecast sales would grow just over six per cent. But sales so far this year are already up by more than 10 per cent at 1.46m, helped by economic confidence and cheap finance as Britain benefits from record low interest rates.

Last month, there was a 6.6 per cent increase in sales against the same point last year, with British dealers shifting 172,907 units as part of a record 29th consecutive month of year-on-year gains.

The Ford Fiesta supermini held on as Britain’s top selling car, SMMT data showed, followed by its mid-sized Focus model and the smaller Vauxhall Corsa.