European car registrations fell 6.3% in June 2013

Article by Anita Panait, on July 16, 2013

Passenger car registrations in Europe dropped 6.3 percent in June 2013 to a two-decade monthly low. Among those who suffered the drop were Volkswagen, Opel, Fiat and PSA/Peugeot-Citroen. Not all carmakers, however, succumbed to sales decline in June in Europe. Ford Motor Co. managed to gain almost 7 percent and the Dacia brand grew 16.4 percent while VW Group's Seat brand rose nearly 11 percent.

Industry association ACEA said in a statement that registrations in the European Union and EFTA markets dropped to 1.18 million vehicles in June 2013 from 1.25 million cars in the same month in 2012. The decline in June made it more unlikely for vehicle sales in Europe to stage a recovery this year, although some industry watchers insist that there were signs that the market is stabilizing.

Carlos Da Silva, IHS Automotive's head of European light vehicles sales forecasts, remarked that the figures posted in June confirmed a slowdown in the rate of decline evident since March/April. He said that sales have started to bottom out, but have yet to start to recover.

Da Silva expects sales in the second half of 2013 to continue to fall, but possibly at a slower rate. He quipped that Europe remains "a dreadful zone" for most carmakers in the second half of 2013. Commerzbank analyst Sascha Gommel told Automotive News Europe that the region is still a weak car market, adding recovery would not be expected in the second half of 2013, but “a stabilization at a low level.” [source: automotive news - sub. required]

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