Car sales have fallen for the eighth successive month, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers.
Overall sales over February were 7.7 per cent less than a year earlier, with private sales declining by 26.7 per cent.
The decline was less severe than in December and January, which suffered 18 per cent and 11.5 per cent drops on the previous year, respectively.
The January VAT rise, the increase in petrol prices and a lack of consumer confidence have been blamed for the slump.
The Volkswagen Golf was the most popular car sold in February, followed by the Vauxhall Corsa and Ford Focus.