Ford races ahead with 2013 sales

Ford raced ahead in the market last month, with both car and commercial vehicle (CV) sales increasing for the month of March and the year to date compared with 2012.

The brand's UK retail car sales and shares were also better than last year, with the popular model the Ford Fiesta outselling its nearest rival by a ratio of more than two to one.

Mark Ovenden, managing director at Ford of Britain, put the good news down to 'vigorous consumer demand'.

"The important March sales month, when the number plate change boosts registrations, has provided more positive news for the UK market and seen Ford's car and CV ranges continue their terrific 2013 sales record," he said.

"Vigorous consumer demand is also driving up our share of more profitable retail sales thanks to our latest and most exciting range of vehicles and the UK's strongest dealer network.

"This range has been strengthened further this year with the launches of the new Ford Fiesta, the Ford Transit Custom, the Ford Kuga and the headline-grabbing new Ford Fiesta ST."

Official SMMT figures have revealed that total car sales in March increased by 5.9% to 394,806 units, compared with March 2012. Ford car sales reached 54,702 units, a significant increase from the 2012 figure of 53,830.

For the year to date at the end of March, car sales across the UK totalled 605,198 - a 7.4% rise since 2012, with Ford car sales up from 82,848 units to 84,347 in the same period.

The success could have been due in part to the much-loved Ford Fiesta, which was the company's March bestseller and brought in a total of 22,748 registrations, finishing 6,579 sales and 1.7 percentage points of market share ahead of its nearest rival.

However, sales figures for other Ford models including the Ka, Fiesta, B-MAX, Focus, C-MAX and Kuga have also improved.

Headed by the Ford Transit - the seventh best-selling vehicle in the UK - the group's medium commercial sales increased from 8,676 to 10,025 during the year, with Ford's share of sales up to 32.1% from 30.2% in March 2012.

Ford Transit leads all the CV segments in which it competes, while the Ford Fiesta van proved it remains as popular as ever, taking 65.8% of its segment in March and 67.5% for the year to date.

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