U.S. February auto sales soared to a 15-year high for the month, carmakers reported on Tuesday, in the latest sign of continued consumer confidence.
Auto sales last month rose about 8 percent, helped by low gasoline prices, available and low-interest credit and higher wages.
Despite gloomy talk about the economy on the U.S. presidential campaign trail, auto sales and other data released on Tuesday indicated the economy was regaining momentum.
Analysts have expressed concerns about a cyclical fall-off in vehicle sales after sustained gains since the 2008-2009 deep recession, but there were no signs of a slowdown.
Ford Motor's sales rose 20 percent as its SUV and crossover vehicles soared 28 percent from last February. F-Series pickup trucks, tops in U.S. sales for more than three decades, gained 10 percent.
Ford, No. 2 in U.S. auto sales, said cars jumped 19 percent, led by its Focus compact. Its stock was up 4.7 percent at $13.10.