New vehicle sales accelerate
New vehicle sales have accelerated into the New Year with the highest number of January registrations on record.
Motor Industry Association figures showed 10,528 new vehicles were registered in January, the highest for the month since records began in 1975.
Chief executive David Crawford said 2014 had got off to a "rip-roaring start", as January figures for new passenger, commercial and total vehicles were all record highs.
"It's the fourth month in a row that records have been the highest since records began, fuelled by a strong New Zealand dollar and a strong economy," he said.
Total new-vehicle registrations in January were up 13.2 per cent on the same month last year.
New commercial vehicle registrations were up 17.1 per cent from January, 2013, and new passenger vehicle sales up 12.3 per cent.
Toyota gained the highest market share for the month, as its new-vehicle sales represented about 17 per cent of the entire market.
The start to 2014's new vehicle registrations follows the 113,294 new vehicles registered last year, the highest number since 1984.
This was up 12.4 per cent on 2012, when 100,795 new vehicles were registered.
Crawford said 2013 would probably be remembered "as the year in which the New Zealand economy finally left the starting line on the path to economic recovery from a number of setbacks".