Europe Car Registrations Fall 5.2% In March: ACEA

New car sales in the EU decreased for the first time in three months in March amid weaker demand among four major markets, especially in Germany and Spain, monthly data from the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association, or ACEA, showed Thursday.

New car registrations dropped 5.2 percent year-over-year to 1.0 million units in March, reversing a 10.1 percent surge in February.

The timing of the Easter holidays negatively impacted last month’s sales across most EU markets, the ACEA said.

Among the four major markets, the German market showed the worst decline of 6.2 percent, followed by Spain with a 4.7 percent fall.

Car sales in Italy dropped 3.7 percent over the year, and the French car market faced 1.5 percent lower demand.

In March, battery electric car sales showed a sharp fall of 11.3 percent annually, with the market share shrinking to 13.0 percent from 13.9 percent in March 2023.

Meanwhile, sales of hybrid-electric cars grew 12.6 percent despite the general market decline, accounting for 29 percent of the market share.

The EU petrol car market contracted by 10.2 percent, and its market share dropped to 35.4 percent in March from 37.4 percent a month ago.

The EU diesel car market declined more heavily, by 18.5 percent. Diesel sales showed a substantial decline in the largest markets.

During the first quarter of this year, total car registrations increased by 4.4 percent, reaching nearly 2.8 million units.

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