Car sales in France dropped 10.3 percent in May 2013, no thanks to continued resistance of local consumers to buy new models even from French carmakers Renault and PSA/Peugeot-Citroen. According to the CCFA industry body, vehicle registrations in the country dropped from 165,691 in May 2012 to 148,554 in May 2013.
The association reiterated its forecast of an 8-percent market decline for full year 2013. Figures show that Renault posted 16.5-percent drop in sales in France in May, while PSA logged an 8.2-percent fall. German carmaker dropped 11 percent while General Motors fell 25.6 percent. To offset slumping local sales, Renault and PSA are introducing new small crossovers -- Captur and Peugeot 2008 – as well a forthcoming update to the Citroen C4 Picasso minivan.
CCFA spokesman Francois Roudier remarked that the model launches would a more positive effect in June, July and through the second half of 2013. Sales of light commercial vehicles in the country also took another hit, falling 11.2 percent in May 2013.
On this, Roudier remarked that this is a clear sign that French economic activity is “still very weak." Carmakers across Europe are hoping that the economic crisis in the region would end soon, or they would continue to bleed financially. In April 2013, car registrations across Europe surged for the first time in 19 months while those in France slowed to 5.2 percent, thanks to extra sales days due to earlier Easter holidays.