Nearly a million new cars were put on finance in the UK during 2015, making up for a huge £16.2bn worth of motors, according to new figures.

Data from the Finance & Leasing Association showed a 10 per cent rise in new car finance volumes compared to 2014, with 984,077 new cars on finance being drove on British roads last year.

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Car finance comes in many forms to meet different preferences, and refers to finance that is secured on the vehicle. This means that you do not own the vehicle until you have paid the finance in full and if you miss repayments, the lender might repossess your car.

The 10% increase accounts for private car finance volumes only, with this type of purchase enjoying an active end to the year with  a 22% increase for private-car finance in December.

An incredible 81.4% of new car models were bought on finance in 2015, up by 75.9% the year before, meaning eight in 10 of all new cars were not bought outright by the driver.

The used car finance market also saw an increase, with 8% more previously owned vehicles acquired through finance deals last year, working out at 1.15 million second-hand motors.

Geraldine Kilkelly, head of research and chief economist at the FLA, said the rise in finance came as no surprise, with further growth expected.

"It was another record year for the point-of-sale consumer car finance market as new business volumes reached more than 2.1 million," Kilkelly said.

"The strength of the market in December reflects strong consumer confidence buoyed by low inflation, interest rates and unemployment.

"The FLA's latest retail motor finance confidence survey suggests that we will see new business growth in 2016 of up to 10 per cent".

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