2016 (Q3) Europe: Car Sales per EU Country

volkswagen-t-cross-breezeSeptember 2016: Car sales in the European Union and EFTA remained strong with the highest new passenger vehicle registrations for the month on record. New car sales in Europe have increased for 36 of the last 37 months. During the first nine months of 2016, the European Union new car market expanded by 8% to 11,243,263 cars. The Netherlands was the only EU country with weaker car sales than a year ago. Germany remained the largest car market in Europe during the first three quarters of 2016.

The European Car Market in 2016 (Q1-Q3)

New passenger vehicle registrations in the European Union and EFTA countries increased by 7.7% to 11,607,266 cars during the first nine months of 2016. This is over 850,000 more cars than in 2015.

New passenger vehicle registration the European Union (EU), excluding the small Maltese market, during the first three quarters of 2016 increased by an even stronger 8% to 11,243,263 cars. The Netherlands was the only EU country with weaker car sales in 2016.

Car Sales Per European Union and EFTA Country in 2016 (Q1-3)

New passenger vehicle registrations per European Union (EU) and EFTA countries during the period January to September 2016 according the ACEA were:

European Country Q1-3/2016 Q1-3/2015 % Change
AUSTRIA 252,178 237,193 6.3
BELGIUM 424,382 392,522 8.1
BULGARIA 18,709 17,081 9.5
CROATIA 34,010 28,345 20
CYPRUS 9,765 7,559 29.2
CZECH REPUBLIC 192,714 171,010 12.7
DENMARK 168,470 155,121 8.6
ESTONIA 17,414 15,661 11.2
FINLAND 92,656 82,730 12
FRANCE 1,502,450 1,421,435 5.7
GERMANY 2,555,783 2,407,938 6.1
GREECE 63,216 58,184 8.6
HUNGARY 69,440 55,298 25.6
IRELAND 143,195 120,961 18.4
ITALY 1,406,035 1,197,274 17.4
LATVIA 12,652 10,286 23
LITHUANIA 15,619 12,864 21.4
LUXEMBOURG 39,383 36,027 9.3
NETHERLANDS 285,355 300,985 -5.2
POLAND 302,966 258,240 17.3
PORTUGAL 158,931 138,266 14.9
ROMANIA 67,997 56,839 19.6
SLOVAKIA 64,812 57,001 13.7
SLOVENIA 49,020 45,468 7.8
SPAIN 874,220 783,918 11.5
SWEDEN 271,396 248,653 9.1
UNITED KINGDOM 2,150,495 2,096,886 2.6
EUROPEAN UNION 11,243,263 10,413,745 8
ICELAND 15,945 11,591 37.6
NORWAY 115,875 111,811 3.6
SWITZERLAND 232,183 239,593 -3.1
EFTA 364,003 362,995 0.3
EU + EFTA 11,607,266 10,776,740 7.7

Note: Exclude Malta.

Car Sales in European Countries in 2016 (Q1-Q3)

The European new car market continued to expand during 2016 with The Netherland and Switzerland the only EU or EFTA countries selling fewer cars during the first nine months of 2016 compared to a year ago.

The three largest European car markets – Germany, the UK and France – continued to grow but below market average. The Italian market grew by 17% to add more than 200,000 cars this year. In the much larger German market, the expansion added around 150,000 cars.

The Spanish and Belgian new car markets expanded above market average. However, the Polish market had strong growth to surpass the shrinking Dutch market as the seventh largest in Europe.

Car sales in The Netherlands were down by 5% – the worst performing market in Europe thus far in 2016. Switzerland was the only other country with negative numbers and as a result fell out of the top-ten list.

The strongest increases in car sales during the first nine months of 2016 in the European Union were in Iceland, Cyprus and Hungary.

Volkswagen remained Europe’s largest carmaker and best-selling brand in 2016 despite loosing market share.