Distinct growth in the new EU Member States and China – Russia weak
The major car markets were largely in good shape in June too. In China (+14 percent) sales climbed in the double-digit range, while Western Europe (+4 percent) and the USA (+1 percent) also recorded growth. The Indian car market reported a positive growth rate for the second month in succession, but in Brazil and Russia the markets were well below last year’s level.
In Western Europe the number of new car registrations rose in June by almost 4 percent to 1.15 million units. This was the tenth month of growth in succession. The momentum in the United Kingdom continued with an increase of a good 6 percent. In France the demand for cars rose by nearly 3 percent. New vehicle registrations in Italy increased by around 4 percent. The Spanish car market again climbed steeply in the double-digit range with a plus of 24 percent. New car registrations in Germany dipped by 2 percent.
The automobile economy in the smaller West European markets developed positively in June. In Greece (+41 percent), Iceland (+27 percent), Sweden (+26 percent) and Portugal (+24 percent) the new car registrations displayed clear double-digit development. The car markets in Norway (+5 percent), Finland (+4 percent), Luxembourg (+2 percent) and Ireland (+1 percent) were also larger than last year.
In the first half of this year car demand in Western Europe was a good 5 percent up at 6.4 million new vehicles. All the key automobile countries noted growth: Germany (+2 percent), France (+3 percent), Italy (+3 percent), Spain (+18 percent), United Kingdom (+11 percent.). The automobile economy hummed in Western Europe’s smaller economies in the first half too: Portugal (+38 percent), Greece and Ireland plus 23 percent each, and Sweden (+18 percent) all displayed dynamic growth. Apart from Austria (-3 percent), Switzerland (-4 percent), Belgium (-1 percent) and the Netherlands (-5 percent), all the other West European countries recorded growth up to June.
In the new EU Member States, new car registration figures in June rose by almost 14 percent to 79,600 new vehicles. Double-digit growth rates were achieved in Romania (+75 percent), the Czech Republic (+26 percent), Hungary (+25 percent), Cyprus (+20 percent), Slovakia (+17 percent), Latvia (+13 percent) and Estonia (+12 percent). Apart from Slovenia (-17 percent), all the new EU Member States reported higher sales figures in June than in the same month last year. In the first half of this year demand in the new EU Member States climbed by a good 17 percent to 457,800 units. None of these countries experienced a shrinking market.
The US market for light vehicles (cars and light trucks) grew by a good 1 percent to 1.41 million new vehicles in June. The lower growth rate can be explained by the fact that this year’s June had two selling days less than June last year. The economic framework conditions remain positive. Consumer confidence in June was higher than it has been for six and a half years. While car sales in June declined slightly by almost 1 percent to 684,100 units, the demand for light trucks grew by 3 percent to 730,300 units. In the first half of the year the car segment in the USA reached last year’s level (3.9 million units). By contrast sales of light trucks rose by a good 8 percent by June and totalled 4.2 million new vehicles. Altogether the market volume for light vehicles in the USA expanded by a clear 4 percent in the first half to 8.1 million units.
China continues to advance at high speed. In all around 1.4 million new cars were sold in June, nearly 14 percent more than in the equivalent month last year. In the first half of 2014 last year’s figures were outstripped by 14 percent and the market reached a volume of just under 8.9 million units. The Chinese market is thus around 40 percent larger than the West European.
In Japan new car registrations in June amounted to 379,200 units and reached last year’s level. In the first half of the year the demand for cars rose by 11 percent to around 2.6 million units, being very high in the first months.
In India car sales increased for the second time in succession. With 218,800 vehicles sold, the market grew by a good 11 percent in June. Alongside a distinct improvement in consumer confidence, this high growth rate is attributable above all to tax reasons. Initially the reduction in purchase tax that entered into force in February was scheduled to expire at the end of June. This led to purchases being brought forward. The government now surprisingly announced at the beginning of July that the tax relief would be maintained. From January to June vehicle sales dropped by a good 3 percent to 1.3 million units.
Russia, on the other hand, remains in reverse. The light vehicle market there shrank by 17 percent to 199,400 new cars in June. In the first six months of the year light vehicle sales dropped by a good 1.2 million units, a decline of nearly 8 percent.
The light vehicle market in Brazil cooled off distinctly in June. New registrations fell by a good 17 percent to 251,000 units. So far this year just under 1.6 million new vehicles have been registered (-7 percent). In order to slow down the market contraction at least a little, the Brazilian government has put the increase of excise tax on industrial products (IPI) planned for 1 July 2014 on hold.
|June 2014||January - June 2014|
|Units||Change 14/13 in %||Units||Change 14/13 in %|
|European Union (EU-28)*||1.189.100||4,5||6.623.000||6,5|
|W. Europe (EU15+EFTA)||1.150.800||3,7||6.393.800||5,5|
|New EU Countries (EU13)*||79.600||13,6||457.800||17,4|