Press Releases

Good first quarter on international automotive markets

Berlin, 18 April 2018

China and US increase – Brazil and Russia show double-digit growth

In the first quarter of the current year, new registrations of passenger cars in Europe (EU28 & EFTA) totaled 4.3 million (+1 percent), which was a new sales record for a first quarter. The figures for the US and China also increased, while growth reached double digits in Russia and Brazil. Japan was the only market with a slight fall in sales.

As March had two working days less this year than in 2017, the European passenger car market recorded a fall in sales of 5 percent to 1.8 million new vehicles. Among the largest individual markets, Spain and France managed to expand by 2 percent each. Contraction was seen in Germany (-3 percent) and Italy (-5 percent). In the UK sales decreased markedly (-16 percent), although it should be remembered that the volume had been very high in March last year.

The US light vehicle market showed surprising growth of 6 percent in March and rose to 1.6 million units. Whereas sales of passenger cars fell once again (-9 percent), the light truck segment, which is twice as large, grew more strongly – by 16 percent. The first quarter of this year had a total of 4.1 million light vehicles (+2 percent), making it the strongest first quarter since 2001.

Passenger car sales in China developed positively last month. At 2.1 million vehicles sold, the market volume added 5 percent, and during the first quarter 6.0 million new cars were sold in China (+4 percent).

In India 300,700 passenger cars were sold in March (+6 percent). So far this year, the accumulated market volume comes to 861,500 vehicles – a rise of 7 percent.

In Japan, passenger car sales lost 4 percent in March (562,500 units), taking the volume for the first quarter of this year to 1.3 million units (-3 percent).

The Russian automotive business also returned positive results last month. The market volume of 157,300 vehicles represented expansion of 14 percent. In the first quarter the market grew by 22 percent to 392,900 vehicles. This was the fourth quarter in succession with double-figure growth rates.

The Brazilian light vehicle market also increased considerably in March. A total of 200,400 new vehicles were sold (+9 percent). This was the third quarter in a row with double-digit growth. New light vehicle sales amounted to 528,200 units, i.e. 15 percent more than in the first quarter of 2017.

 

March 2018

January - March 2018

Volume

Change
18/17 in %

Volume

Change
18/17 in %

Europe (EU28+EFTA)*

1.837.000

-5,2

4.282.100

0,6

European Union (EU-28)*

1.792.600

-5,3

4.171.600

0,7

W. Europe (EU15+EFTA)

1.705.600

-6,0

3.925.700

-0,3

New EU Countries(EU13)*

131.400

5,8

356.400

11,9

Russia**

157.300

13,9

392.900

21,7

USA**

1.647.300

6,4

4.093.100

2,1

Japan

562.500

-3,6

1.303.900

-2,7

Brazil**

200.400

8,8

528.200

14,7

India

300.700

6,4

861.500

7,2

China

2.124.100

5,1

5.994.100

3,7

* 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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