European car sales up 9 percent in April image

The European passenger car market posted strong results again in April, marking the 32nd consecutive month of growth.

Passenger car registrations rose by 9.1 percent last month, reaching 1,273,733 units, according to data provided by the European Automobile Manufacturers Association. “This is the highest result in volume terms since April 2008, just before the economic crisis hit the automotive industry,” it said in a statement. Among the major markets, Spain (+21.2 percent) and Italy (+11.5 percent) recorded the strongest performance with double-digit percentage gains, followed by Germany (+8.4 percent), France (+7.1 percent) and the UK (+2.0 percent). As for the first four months of the year, new passenger car registrations increased by 8.5 percent, totaling more than 5 million units (5,094,026).

Among the best performers last month among the automakers, one of the biggest jump in sales was reported by Daimler’s 21.6 percent, followed by a 13.6 percent increase posted by Fiat-Chrysler. BMW Group and Toyota were also particularly strong, rising 11.7 percent and 11.9 percent, respectively.

As for Europe’s biggest carmaker, Volkswagen, its sales in the region were up 5.3 percent, while the company’s core brand managed to get back on growth, with a rise of 2.3 percent in April, after dropping 1.6 percent a month earlier. However, Group’s market share shrunk from 24.9 to 23.9 percent. The second and the third largest auto makers on the continent, PSA Peugeot Citroen and Renault, grew their sales by 5.6 percent and 5.3 percent respectively.