Over the first eight months of 2021, sales volumes saw a year-on-year increase of 11.2%, counting 6.8 million new passenger cars in total, reports the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA). Despite the weak performance of EU markets during the summer months, substantial gains earlier in the year kept cumulative growth in positive territory. As a result, each of the four major markets posted growth so far this year: Italy (+30.9%), France (+12.8%), Spain (+12.1%) and Germany (+2.5%).
In July 2021, the European Union passenger car market saw a significant setback, with new registrations down 23.2% to 823,949 units. After four months of accelerated growth, the EU’s four major markets showed similar trends, all posting strong losses. France saw the steepest decrease (-35.3%) in July, followed by Spain (-28.9%), Germany (-24.9%) and Italy (-19.2%).
During the month of August, car registrations across the European Union decreased by 19.1% compared to the same month last year, totalling just 622,993 units. For the second month in a row, the largest car markets posted double-digit declines: Spain (-28.9%), Italy (-27.3%), Germany (-23.0%) and France (-15.0%).
In the UK (excluded from the above figures due to its exit from the EU), car registrations showed a similar trend, reported the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). Year to date car registrations totaled 1,101,302 units (+20.3%). August 2021 followed the European trends, with numbers down to just 68,033 car registrations in the month. These figures were reportedly the lowest since 2013, and a steep drop of 22% on August 2020 figures.