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September proves to be best month yet in 2013 for European new car market

According to the latest new car sales analysis from JATO Dynamics, the world’s leading provider of automotive intelligence, the European new car market made impressive progress in September with an overall increase in registrations of new cars of 5.6% for the month compared with September 2012 – the largest single monthly increase seen so far in 2013.

JATO’s headline market analysis:

  • The European new car market was just 3.9% behind 2012 performance in September, the smallest deficit seen so far in 2013

  • Three of the ‘Big Five’ markets recorded an increase in sales in September compared with 2012 figures

  • Great Britain posted the largest volume increases in both monthly and year-to-date registrations in Europe

In September, Great Britain posted increases in registrations of new vehicles of 43,524 (up 12.1%) for the month and 174,315 (up 10.8%) year-to-date, the largest volume increase in Europe.

Also making significant progress out of the ‘Big Five’ was Spain, where monthly sales increased by 30.7% from September last year. Compared with the same period in 2012, Spain now has just a 1.1% deficit in year-to-date sales.

Overall, the European new car market is now just 3.9% behind figures from this stage in 2012. France, Germany and the Netherlands all have some of the largest decreases in sales volumes in Europe, however all have either reduced the rate of reduction or, in the case of France, increased monthly sales performance during September.

Sales by Market

Country

Sept_13

Sept_12

% Change Sept

Sept YtD_13

Sept YtD_12

% Change YtD

Austria

25,301

27,094

-6.6%

248,111

266,890

-7.0%

Belgium

34,890

33,660

+3.7%

389,471

386,733

+0.7%

Croatia

1,805

1,698

+6.3%

21,920

26,381

-16.9%

Cyprus

497

692

-28.2%

4,642

8,055

-42.4%

Czech Republic

13,208

12,475

+5.9%

120,151

131,038

-8.3%

Denmark

14,578

13,914

+4.8%

135,096

128,390

+5.2%

Estonia

1,569

1,548

+1.4%

15,317

15,191

+0.8%

Finland

8,226

7,990

+3.0%

80,863

88,841

-9.0%

France

142,166

137,536

+3.4%

1,309,813

1,431,520

-8.5%

Germany

247,199

250,082

-1.2%

2,217,019

2,358,798

-6.0%

Great Britain

403,136

359,612

+12.1%

1,794,924

1,620,609

+10.8%

Greece

3,816

3,454

+10.5%

43,981

45,392

-3.1%

Hungary

4,680

3,544

+32.1%

41,260

39,650

+4.1%

Iceland

350

470

-25.5%

6,218

6,371

-2.4%

Ireland

3,175

2,481

+28.0%

71,719

76,642

-6.4%

Italy

107,186

110,601

-3.1%

1,004,711

1,096,639

-8.4%

Latvia

940

744

+26.3%

7,763

7,995

-2.9%

Lithuania

986

980

+0.6%

8,899

9,177

-3.0%

Luxembourg

3,158

3,340

-5.4%

36,026

39,090

-7.8%

Norway

12,275

11,212

+9.5%

107,438

105,538

+1.8%

Poland

21,628

18,842

+14.8%

213,120

206,317

+3.3%

Portugal*

8,235

6,359

+29.5%

80,283

74,478

+7.8%

Romania*

7,418

6,759

+9.7%

48,909

53,580

-8.7%

Serbia

1,574

1,605

-1.9%

15,507

17,105

-9.3%

Slovakia

4,935

7,201

-31.5%

46,562

52,560

-11.4%

Slovenia

3,990

3,203

+24.6%

39,821

38,707

+2.9%

Spain

45,918

35,139

+30.7%

548,783

554,921

-1.1%

Sweden

24,388

21,937

+11.2%

193,065

203,711

-5.2%

Switzerland

22,176

21,063

+5.3%

224,493

244,340

-8.1%

The Netherlands

31,627

31,945

-1.0%

303,824

427,190

-28.9%

Grand Total

1,204,102

1,137,180

+5.6%

9,379,709

9,761,849

-3.9%

NOTE: * denotes estimated volumes for September 2013

Manufacturers had a good month with Peugeot and Citroen the only two of Europe’s top 10 who did not increase sales in September, year-on-year. Also within the monthly top 10, only Mercedes and BMW have seen an increase in sales year-to-date, compared with the same period in 2012.

Renault, who finished fourth in both the monthly and year-to-date top 10, recorded the largest increase in volume, up by 10,444 (16.8%) for the month. The successful launch of the new Captur crossover and strong sales of the Clio have contributed to this result.

Market leaders Volkswagen continued to dominate European sales figures, increasing monthly performance by 1.6% on September 2012. So far this year, the manufacturer has sold 1,164,131 vehicles, down 6.8% on the same period in 2012, but still selling 64.2% more volume than the next closest brand.

Top 10 Brands

Make

Sept_13

Sept_12

% Change Sept

Sept YtD_13

Sept YtD_12

% Change YtD

VOLKSWAGEN

137,202

135,091

+1.6%

1,164,131

1,249,533

-6.8%

FORD

98,497

93,518

+5.3%

708,932

748,575

-5.3%

OPEL/VAUXHALL

88,088

83,453

+5.6%

633,769

659,324

-3.9%

RENAULT

72,757

62,313

+16.8%

593,467

630,319

-5.8%

BMW

70,604

65,488

+7.8%

486,682

481,991

+1.0%

PEUGEOT

66,855

68,279

-2.1%

561,581

621,739

-9.7%

AUDI

66,623

64,857

+2.7%

534,605

550,280

-2.8%

MERCEDES

63,387

55,920

+13.4%

478,008

454,956

+5.1%

TOYOTA

52,530

49,645

+5.8%

390,587

403,321

-3.2%

CITROEN

51,715

53,959

-4.2%

458,892

529,686

-13.4%

The Volkswagen Golf also continues to lead the monthly top 10 models table, with increases of 17.4% for the month and 2.1% year-to-date compared with 2012, securing the model’s strong lead.

Behind the Golf are three B-segment models, including the Renault Clio, finishing third year-to-date and fourth in monthly top 10. The Clio recorded the largest percentage increase* in the top 10 for both these periods.

It was also a strong September for the BMW 3 Series. Finishing the month in seventh for the month and ninth for year-to-date, it was the only model outside the volume B- and C-segments to appear in the top 10.

Gareth Hession, Vice President of Research at JATO Dynamics, commented: “September’s results should be something for the European car market to celebrate. The fact that the deficit in year-to-date figures is the smallest we’ve seen this year is encouraging. Similarly, September saw the largest single monthly increase of 2013 so far. Although it is still too early to tell whether this signals the start of long-term improvement for the industry, our latest analysis shows there are certainly grounds for optimism.”

Make & Model

Sept_13

Sept_12

% Change Sept

Sept YtD_13

Sept YtD_12

% Change YtD

VOLKSWAGEN GOLF

45,212

38,506

+17.4%

347,405

340,212

+2.1%

FORD FIESTA

33,561

31,445

+6.7%

222,184

238,440

-6.8%

OPEL/VAUXHALL CORSA

28,347

30,607

-7.4%

188,705

211,203

-10.7%

RENAULT CLIO

25,851

20,074

+28.8%

216,761

180,391

+20.2%

FORD FOCUS

24,872

24,127

+3.1%

176,507

190,350

-7.3%

PEUGEOT 208

22,398

23,424

-4.4%

189,654

98,309

-*

BMW 3 SERIES

22,054

17,875

+23.4%

155,335

129,317

+20.1%

VOLKSWAGEN POLO

21,625

20,613

+4.9%

201,929

225,119

-10.3%

OPEL/VAUXHALL ASTRA

21,055

21,996

-4.3%

153,281

179,660

-14.7%

NISSAN QASHQAI

18,993

19,061

-0.4%

161,054

161,699

-0.4%

NOTES: *Year-to-date percentage changes for the Peugeot 208 are not representative due to the new model’s introduction in 2012 and have therefore been removed from the table and excluded from the narrative.

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