The number of vehicles bought on finance grew 12% year-on-year in April to 85,436 according to figures released by the Finance & Leasing Association (FLA).

The value of this finance was £1,456m, 17% more than in April 2015.

This growth was despite the fact that new car registrations only grew 2% in April. Private car sales actually shrank 2.5% year-on-year in the month. As a result, finance penetration increased to 83.6% for the twelve months to April, up from 82.7% for the 12 months to March.

The used car finance market grew at a slower rate. The number of used cars bought on finance grew 8% to 109,821. The value of this finance grew 9% year-on-year to £1,163.

Geraldine Kilkelly, head of research and chief economist at the FLA, said: "Growth in new business volumes reported by the POS consumer car finance market was relatively steady in April and in line with the industry’s expectations of achieving solid single-digit growth in 2016 as a whole."