Press Releases

International passenger car markets contract in first half-year

Berlin, 17 July 2019

Europe and US have slight falls – China contracts markedly – Brazil increases – Germany shows slender growth

Most of the international automotive markets have returned negative results for the first half of the current year. On all the major markets – China, the US and Europe (EU-28 and EFTA) – fewer vehicles were sold than in the first half of 2018. Russia and India also recorded contraction, whereas the Japanese market hovered around last year’s figure. Only Brazil reported double-digit growth.

In Europe (EU-28 and EFTA), 8.4 million passenger cars were newly registered in the first half of 2019, which was 3 percent less than in the same period last year. Germany was the only one of the five largest European markets to register an increase in new registrations (+1 percent). By contrast, sales declined in France (-2 percent), the United Kingdom (-3 percent), Italy (-4 percent) and Spain (-6 percent). In June the European market lost 8 percent, but it should be remembered that the month had two working days less than June 2018.

In the US, the light vehicle market (passenger cars and light trucks) showed a year-to-date fall of 2 percent to 8.4 million new vehicles. While the light truck segment (accounting for more than two thirds of the combined market) expanded by 1 percent, the car segment lost 9 percent. In June 1.5 million light vehicles were sold (-2 percent).

The Chinese new car market finished the first half of 2019 on 9.9 million passenger cars (-14 percent). Last month’s sales totaled 1.7 million units, 7 percent below the level in June 2018.

The total sales volume in India over the first six months of this year fell by 10 percent to 1.6 million passenger cars. In June the market recorded a year-on-year loss of 18 percent.

In the first half-year Japan’s vehicle business totaled 2.3 million passenger cars – close to the 2018 result. Last month 367,000 vehicles were sold, i.e. 2 percent less than in June last year.

The Russian light vehicle market recorded 828,800 new vehicles sold by the end of June, around 2 percent down on last year’s level. June sales of light vehicles amounted to 151,200, which was a fall of 3 percent.

The Brazilian light vehicle market continued its recovery in the first half-year and reached almost 1.3 million units, exceeding last year’s result by 11 percent. In June the market grew by around 10 percent (214,000 units).

New registrations/sales of passenger cars

  June 2019 January-June 2019
  Units Change
19/18 in %
Units Change
19/18 in %
Europe (EU28+EFTA)*


-7.9 8,426,200 -3.1
European Union (EU-28)* 1,446,200 -7.8 8,183,600 -3.1
Western Europe (EU15+EFTA) 1,359,200 -8.4 7,671,200 -3.5
 New EU Countries (EU13)* 132,100 -3.0 754,900 1.4
Russia** 151,200 -3.3 828,800 -2.4
USA** 1,514,900 -1.9 8,412,900 -1.9
Japan 367,000 -2.2 2,285,700 -0.3
Braszil** 214,000 9.5 1,251,800 10.9
India 225,700 -17.5 1,556,800 -10.3
China 1,700,000 -7.1 9,932,900 -14.0
* 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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