A SIGNIFICANT increase in the number of new vehicles on Irish roads has been welcomed as a strong sign of economic recovery.
Some 4,376 new cars were licensed last month, a 34pc increase on the same month last year.
And in the year to the end of September, 86,894 new cars were bought - a 30pc increase on 2013, according to Central Statistics Office figures.
Alan Nolan, the director general of the Society of the Irish Motor Industry, told the Herald the hugely-positive figures were a strong sign of recovery in the Irish economy.
There has been a 20pc increase in new heavy commercial vehicles and a 48pc increase in new light commercial vehicles for the year which are very strong indicators of recovery, he said.
"We have seen a return of consumers to garages which shows that people are much more confident about the economy."
People were showing they had confidence regarding their disposable income when they made the decision to buy, he said.
He believed new car sales will exceed 96,000 this year, though it is still a long way from the high of 188,000 that was recorded in 2007.
Dublin Fine Gael TD Alan Farrell said: "People feel secure enough to make such investments, and it is a great boost of confidence for the economy that businesses see fit to plan ahead by purchasing new vehicles.
"It's a positive indication of the economy's growth and a welcome boost to the Exchequer."