Fleet and business car registrations were 3.4% up in October, as the market rose overall by 1.4%.
Retail registrations were down by 1.1%, though are up by 0.3% year to date.
Alternatively fuelled vehicles continued to grow in popularity, rising 12.4% in October and 23.3% in the year so far to 75,987 registrations – the highest ever level achieved in the first 10 months of the year. Year-to-date performance for the overall market remains ahead by 2.5%, with 2,330,663 new cars registered.
Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: “September’s number plate change is always a hard act to follow so the market’s growth in October, albeit moderate, is welcome news. Low interest rates, affordable finance packages and a range of exciting new models helped attract buyers into showrooms and we now look to government to ensure consumer and business confidence remains buoyant.”