British new car registrations hit an all-time high last year, two sources told Reuters citing preliminary industry data, helped by rising consumer confidence, the strength of the pound and cheap car loans.
"The headline number will be around 2.63 million," one of the sources close to the data said, adding that some of the sales figures for the last trading day of December had yet to be seen.
The previous record for registrations in Britain was set in 2003 when 2.58 million new cars were sold.
A second source familiar with the data also said the total figure would be around 2.63 million.
The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, an industry body, is due to publish the data on Thursday. It declined to comment when contacted by Reuters.