DETROIT — Auto dealers expect 2013 to be a strong year for the auto industry, according to a survey of more than 100 dealers conducted by Ally Financial at the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) convention earlier this month.

Nearly 60 percent of respondents expect their sales to grow by more than 10 percent this year, and more than 54 percent expect consumer confidence to be the key factor in sustaining auto sales momentum.

The age of vehicles on the road, incentives and the availability of new-vehicle inventory will also support sales growth, dealers said. About half of dealers surveyed indicate that customer credit profiles are improving.

“We expect 2013 to be a strong year for the auto industry as the economy and consumer credit profiles steadily improve and as new models attract customers to showrooms," said Tim Russi, president of Auto Finance for Ally Financial. "We met with many dealers at NADA who reinforced our position and share our optimism and passion to make it happen."

Additionally, 47 percent of survey respondents indicated that the used-vehicle department will be the most profitable within the dealership this year. More than 70 percent of dealers expect sales of F&I products, such as vehicle service contracts, to increase this year, as well.