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Spanish auto production rebounds from crisis

Car production in Spain surged 5.56 percent in 2010, the first rise since 2007, as government incentives in Europe boosted sales, official data showed Monday.

The country produced 1.913 million cars at its factories last year, manufacturers’ association Anfac said in a statement.

It was first increase since Spain plunged into recession in 2008, but was well below the level of 2.195 million in 2007.

In terms of all vehicles, including vans and trucks, Spanish production leapt 10.04 percent to 2.387 millin units.

“In the first half of the year, the level of production remained high, in part due to the impact of incentive plans in place in various countries in Europe, including Spain,” Anfac said in a statement.

Exports followed the same trend, rising 10.44 percent for all types of vehicles.

Spain’s auto manufacturing sector is the third-biggest in Europe, according to 2009 figures from the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association.

However, it has no national auto maker besides Seat, which is now owned by Germany’s Volkswagen.