Saturday 24 February 2018

European car sales rise 6.5pc in June despite UK dip - ACEA

The cost of car cover is rising. Stock photo: PA
The cost of car cover is rising. Stock photo: PA

European sales of Volkswagen cars dipped in June, a month of rising demand in most large markets which helped rival volume brands Renault, Fiat, Mazda, Kia and Hyundai post double digit percentage sales gains.

Car registrations in Britain, Europe's second-biggest car market behind Germany, fell 0.8pc in June, the second drop in more than four years, weighed by a 20pc decline in VW sales and an uncertain economic outlook.

VW, Europe's largest carmaker, is grappling with the biggest business crisis in its 78-year history after admitting in September it cheated U.S. diesel emissions tests for toxic nitrogen oxide and in November that it also understated carbon dioxide emissions.

Overall, European car sales jumped as most volume and premium brands saw double-digit growth rates, data provided the Brussels-based Association of European Carmakers (ACEA) showed on Friday.

Registrations of June monthly new car sales in the European Union and the European Free Trade Association increased 6.5pc on the year, to 1,507,303 vehicles, ACEA said.

Passenger car registrations in the European Union rose for the 34th consecutive month, with June registrations reaching 1,459,508 new cars.

Two of Europe's five biggest markets recorded double-digitsales gains, led by Italy and Spain where registrations rose 11.9pc and 11.2pc respectively, while French sales increased 0.8pc and the region's No.1 market Germany posted 8.3pc growth. Last month's expansion was driven by mass market manufacturers Renault and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles'(FCA) Fiat brand, jumping and 21.2pc and 13.9pc respectively, ACEA said. Germany's luxury carmakers also boosted sales, with the core Mercedes and BMW brand sales jumping 16.1pc and 14.6pc respectively, while Volkswagen-owned luxury brand Audi saw flat sales. In early June, the European auto industry association ACEA hiked its 2016 EU sales forecast to 14 million passenger cars or 5pc growth year-on-year, compared with an earlier forecast of 2pc sales growth, predicted in January.

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