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Great British cars drive sales higher still

2013 has been something of a bumper year for the British car industry. Production continues to rise and exports are at record levels. In the domestic market sales are up too and every month sees a new year on year rise. The reasons for all of this success have been discussed at length. At home, low interest rates have made affordable finance packages more available.

2013 has been something of a bumper year for the British car industry. Production continues to rise and exports are at record levels. In the domestic market sales are up too and every month sees a new year on year rise. The reasons for all of this success have been discussed at length. At home, low interest rates have made affordable finance packages more available. This has made it far easier for more motorists to afford a better car and has tempted them back into the show rooms. Moving abroad, it has become apparent that the emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China, the so-called BRIC economies, have developed a taste for luxury British marques. This is undoubtedly the single biggest factor in our export success.

Such financial and economic reasons for this resurgence in the British car industry are all well and good but the fact remains that if we were not producing great cars then people wouldn't be buying them in great numbers. Thankfully, we are producing such truly great cars. Looking back on 2013, two models in particular stand out from the crowd and indeed would stand out in any company. Both of these cars are from the Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) stable, a company that perhaps more than any other defines this renaissance in UK car making.

The Jaguar F-type has quite a heritage. For many, including Enzo Ferrari, its illustrious E-type predecessor was the most beautiful car in the world. This could overawe many designers but not Ian Callum, head of design at JLR. His design certainly recalls the E-type and is a deliberate homage to that classic. At the same time, however, it is also undeniably contemporary. Like the E-type, it looks great from every angle but it is far from being only a pretty coupe. Its performance is blistering and it delivers a driving experience to match those good looks. Costing upwards of £58,000, it proves too that there is money in the market for truly outstanding cars.

The Range Rover Sport is also from the revived JLR. This is perhaps the ultimate crossover car and the ultimate SUV. It is the ideal car for those who have everything and want even more. It boasts all the comfort and ride quality of a luxury saloon but at the same time has the performance of a sports car. Throw in some astonishing off-road abilities and it could be said that you have it all – and so does the Range Rover Sport.

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