France New Car Registrations Down 10.3% in May image

France new car registrations dropped 10.3% in May to 148,554 units.

New car registrations in France have fallen 10.3% in May, with Citroen and Renault being the worst affected. Renault fell 16.5% and Citroen dropped 14.5%, a clear sign that auto industry in France is still struggling with the economic crisis in Europe. Domestic automakers were more affected compared with foreign automakers.

Domestic brands dropped 12.1%, while manufacturers with bases outside France fell 8.4%. According to statistics published by France’s industry group for auto makers, CCFA, from January to April new car registrations fell 12% due to weak demand in Europe. France, which is the second largest economy in Europe, fell into recession during the first quarter of the year. Two months ago unemployment reached a 16-year high, up 10.6% to 3.2 million.

Auto sales in France dropped only 5.2% in April, a slight hope that auto demand might stabilize, with new vehicle registrations down to 157,859 units from 166,552 units in April 2012, according to CCFA industry association. Sales from January to April dipped 12.3%, after a 16.4% fall in March.

“The plunge seems to be halting after the double-digit declines of previous months,” CCFA spokesman Francois Roudier said.


  • Toby Astor

    The problem with France is the taxes ! People can't afford to buy new cars because of them. There are many companies there that would like to continue, but the French government does not seem to appreciate the importance of this. Already Toyota is planning to export around 25,000 French built gasoline versions of the Yaris to the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico – and that's every year – great – but what about some tax incentives to keep Toyota in France. Also Schaeffler and Continental, both autoparts manufacturers, plus of course Schaeffler's INA, LuK and FAG brands all provide a lot of work in France. Come on Francois Hollande – M. Le President – give us something to work with here !