European Auto Sales in August Mostly Down image

New car sales in Germany, Italy, France and Spain dropped by between 3% and 20% year-on-year.

Import car brand association VDIK reported that in Germany auto sales dropped in August with 4.7%, to 226,500 units, bringing the total for the first eight months of the year to 2.1 million, down 0.6% compared to the same period last year. French auto sales dropped for the 10th straight month with 11% to 96,115 units and Italy’s sales were also down 20% according to Fiat chief executive Sergio Marchionne.

Last month Spain reported a 3.4% increase, due to 10,000 customers that rushed to buy cars before the September sales tax rise. But August sales did not save the country from the overall drop of 8.5% in the first eight months of the year.

“The last part of the year, especially September and October are going to be a disaster. We are going to see a sharp fall unless sellers hold the sector up by making aggressive offers,” a spokesman for car distributors’ association Faconauto told the news agency.

ANFAC declared that from January to August 520,216 cars were sold, and forecasts no more than 700,000 by the end of the year.