“With Easter falling during the month and following record performances in the first quarter of the year, the decline of -6.6% in EU passenger car registrations seen in April was expected,” said Sue Robinson, Director of the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA), which represents franchised car and commercial vehicle dealers in the UK, commenting on official figures published by the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA).
A total of 1,191,034 units were registered in the EU in April 2017, 6.6% less than the year before. Most major markets saw a decrease: the UK’s market dropped by -19.8%, followed by Germany (-8.0%), France (-6.0%), and Italy (-4.6%). Amongst the largest markets only Spain grew by 1.1%.
Figures remain positive in the first four months of the year with overall demand up 4.7% on last year, with a total of 5,332,854 units registered. From January to April, Italy (+8.0%) and Spain (+6.1%) saw the strongest increases, followed by Germany (+2.5%), France (+2.0%) and the UK (+1.1%).
Robinson continued, “Positively, year to date demand for new cars in Europe remains higher than last year in line with UK’s results. After a very strong 2016, we expect markets to continue to stabilise over the coming months.