NEW car sales are on course for their best year in a decade, a report has revealed.

A survey from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said new registrations in July reached 172,907, a 6.6 per cent rise on July 2013.

The figures took the year-so-far total to 1,460,172, a 10.1 per cent rise on the January-July 2013 total.

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The report said one of the best-selling models has been the Sunderland-made Nissan Qashqai, with the SMMT predicting 2.45 million sales could be reached. for the whole of 2014.

That would be 8.1 per cent up on the 2013 total, and the best year-end figure since 2004.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: "July saw the new car market extend its record period of growth to a 29th month, as confident consumers took advantage of an array of new products and attractive finance deals on the latest fuel-efficient new cars.

"The continued positivity has led to an uplift in our full-year forecast. However, the more moderate growth of the last three months shows that overall demand is beginning to stabilise."

The best-selling models in July 2014 were:

1. Ford Fiesta

2. Ford Focus

3. Vauxhall Corsa

4. Volkswagen Golf

5. Nissan Qashqai

6. Vauxhall Astra

7. Audi A3

8. Fiat 500

9. BMW 3 Series

10. Mini