New car sales fell in February

Once again new car sales dived last month with only 54,359 registered, indicating a 21.9% drop on the previous year, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).

Paul Everitt, SMMT chief executive, said that new car registrations were continuing to fall and urgent action was still required by the Government.

He added: "Other European countries have been proactive in assisting their automotive industries and it is imperative that the UK Government increases the pace in responding to industry proposals for a scrappage scheme and access to finance and credit."

The drop last month was less than expected after a 30.9% decrease in sales in January.

However, the SMMT said: "The market remains subdued. The falling value of stocks and shares, weak economic data and increasing number of job losses all continue to dampen consumer confidence and the willingness to spend on large items like cars."

The small car sector was the only area to buck the trend in February, recording a 47.3% increase on the same month in 2008, with the Ford Fiesta proving to be the UK's top-selling model for the fourth successive month.

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