Press Releases

Western Europe continues respectable growth

Berlin, 14 October 2016

International passenger car markets: new EU countries add one fifth – China and India very dynamic – US market almost at last year’s level

The three large automobile markets all showed rather different trends in September. China was very dynamic with a rise of 32 percent and Western Europe added nearly 7 percent, but the US market hovered just below last year’s level. The light vehicle markets in Brazil and Russia contracted, as expected, while the Indian passenger car market expanded by one fifth.

New passenger car registrations in Western Europe climbed to a good 1.4 million vehicles (+7 percent) in September. All five major markets recorded growth. Double-digit increases in the demand for passenger cars occurred in Italy (+17 percent) and Spain (+14 percent). In Germany the number of new registrations rose by more than 9 percent, while France and the UK recorded increases of 2 percent.

In September demand was keen in the smaller European countries, too. Double-digit growth was seen in Iceland (+29 percent), Austria (+15 percent), Belgium (+14 percent), Finland (+13 percent), Norway (+12 percent) and Portugal (+11 percent). Developments were also positive in Sweden (+9 percent), Switzerland (+8 percent), Luxembourg (+6 percent) and Denmark (+4 percent). The figures fell in Ireland (-2 percent), the Netherlands (-4 percent) and Greece (-10 percent).

In the first nine months of this year the Western European passenger car market totaled nearly 10.8 million new vehicles (+7 percent).

In the new EU Member States, new passenger car registrations rose by one fifth in September to 93,100 new vehicles. The most dynamic countries were Romania (+63 percent), Hungary (+31 percent) and Latvia (+29 percent). Since January a total of 855,100 passenger cars have been newly registered in the new EU countries (+16 percent).

On the US market, sales of light vehicles (passenger cars and light trucks) amounted to 1.4 million units last month, which almost equaled last year’s level (-1 percent). The trend to light trucks is continuing: while passenger car sales lost 7 percent and fell to 554,200 units, light truck sales rose by a good 4 per cent to 873,600 units.

This year so far the US market has an accumulated volume of 13 million light vehicles, only just exceeding the number for the same period in 2015.

China’s passenger car market again grew strongly in September. Totaling just over 2.2 million units, new vehicle sales added almost one third to last year’s figure. During the first nine months the Chinese passenger car market expanded by 18 percent to nearly 16.2 million vehicles.

In Japan, new passenger car registrations lost 1 percent last month, falling to 396,900 units. By the end of September the total was just under 3.2 million new cars, around 4 percent down on the 2015 figure.

India’s passenger car sales rose by 20 percent in September to reach 278,400 units. The accumulated Indian car market comes to a good 2.2 million new cars for the first three quarters, i.e. nearly 9 percent above last year’s level.

In September the Russian light vehicle market lost ground once again – falling by 11 percent to 125,600 units. This year so far light vehicle sales have decreased by more than 14 percent – in the first nine months a little over 1 million vehicles were sold.

Brazil’s light vehicle market continued to contract and lost 20 percent. In September 155,100 new cars were registered. Since January, the volume of new registrations has fallen by over 22 percent to 1.5 million light vehicles.

New Passenger Car Registrations/Sales

  September 2016 Januar - September 2016
  Units Change 16/15 in % Units Change 16/15 in %
Europe (EU28+EFTA)*


7,3 11.607.300 7,7
  European Union (EU-28)* 1.455.200 7,2 11.243.300 8,0
  W. Europe (EU15+EFTA)) 1.403.100 6,5 10.752.100 7,1
  New EU Countries (EU13)* 93.100 20,4 855.100 16,2
Russia** 125.600 -10,9 1.020.900 -14,4
USA** 1.427.800 -0,7 13.044.100 0,4
Japan 396.900 -0,7 3.157.100 -3,7
Brazil** 155.100 -19,6 1.460.600 -22,5
India 278.400 19,9 2.217.200 8,9
China 2.219.800 31,6 16.189.500 17,7
* without Malta
** Light Vehicles
Eckehart Rotter
Eckehart Rotter Head of Department Press

Tel: +49 30 897842-120 Fax: +49 30 897842-603
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