France new car sales down 13.9 percent in 2012 image

Situation in Europe is black! Registrations of new vehicles in France dropped 13.9 percent in 2012 to only 1.90 million units. This is the lowest level since 1997!

On the same time, the French car manufacturers’ association reports that in December only 160,246 new cars were sold, down 14.6 percent compared to the same period of 2011.
Renault is the “leader” in sales slump in 2012 with a decline of 22.1 percent in sales, followed by PSA Peugeot Citroen (minus 18 percent).

In December only, Renault group suffered a 27 percent drop in its registrations, Germany’s Volkswagen AG minus 20.0 percent and PSA Peugeot-Citroen was down 14 percent. However, Ford was the “leader” in December. The U.S. based automaker, in France saw a 40 percent decline!

CCFA (Comité des Constructeurs Français d’Automobiles) reports that sales of delivery vans also fell by 22 percent last month to the lowest level since 2008, while for the entire year sales recorded an 11 percent decline to only 384,121 units.

“In addition to individual consumers holding back, particularly in the mass market, we’re now seeing company fleet sales slowing down,” he said.

France is the third largest car manufacturer in Europe after Germany (n1) and Spain (n2) and has 400,000 employees.

“The middle class, which tends to buy standard French cars of between €10,000 and €20,000, has been particularly badly hit by the crisis,” said the CFFA’s François Roudier

According to the official reports, unemployment rose in November to the highest level since January 1998 – reaching 10.7 percent.