Good news about EU auto sales is always welcome, especially when it comes after 17 months of declining sales. Thus the blog is happy to note that April’s sales rose 1.7% versus 2012. Equally, however, it has to report the commentary of Europe’s auto association (ACEA):
“The region counted on average two more working days compared to the same month last year, which would account for the increase. In absolute figures, it is the third lowest level of new registrations for a month of April (2012 was the absolute lowest)”.
On a year-to-date basis, ACEA also note that:
“The UK remained the only major market to post growth (+8.9%). Spain (-6.7%), Germany (-8.5%), France (-12.3%) and Italy (-12.3%) all saw their demand decline, leading to an overall 7.1% decrease in the EU”.
UK sales are only rising due to the £25bn ($38bn) currently being paid to consumers by the banks, as compensation for mis-selling activities. The average £3k payments cover the deposit required on a car loan. UK car sales will likely follow the general EU pattern when these end.