Brazil New Car Sales Down 6.6% in February image

New car – car and light truck – sales fell 6.6 percent in February and almost 9 percent (8.9%) from a year earlier as the observance of Carnival holidays likely weighed on customer turnout at the nation’s dealerships, data showed.

February sales reached 235,896 cars and light commercial vehicles, down from 258,798 in the 2011 month (-8.9 percent), Fenabrave said on its website. Sales dropped 6.6% from January, when 252,697 units were sold.

Brazil is a key market for the world’s biggest automakers, including Italy’s Fiat SpA (FIA.MI), Germany’s Volkswagen AG (VOWG.DE) and U.S.-based General Motors Co (GM.N) and Ford Motor Co (F.N). Asian automakers are also increasing their presence here.

Currently, the most successful genuine Brazilian auto company is Troller, with its T4 and Pantanal models. It sells all over Latin America and Africa.