Q1-3 /2019: Germany remained the largest new car market in Europe followed by the United Kingdom, France, and Italy.
January to September 2019: New passenger vehicle registrations in the European Union and EFTA countries contracted by 1.6% to just over 12 million cars. Germany was again by far the largest new car market in Europe and its expansion by 2.5% was the only large country showing growth. New car sales in the UK, France, Italy, and Spain were lower.
European New Car Market in 2019 (Q1-Q3)
New passenger vehicle registrations in the EU and EFTA countries during the first three quarters of 2019 were 1.6% lower than a year ago. The total number of new cars sold in Europe thus far in 2019 was 12,115,927 compared to 12,308,191 a year ago.
In the European Union (EU), new passenger vehicle registrations contracted by 1.6% to 11,789,175 cars. In EFTA, car sales were down by 1.7% to 346,752 cars.
The outlook for the rest of 2019 remains fairly positive. The introduction of new WLTP emission regulation in September 2018 disrupted the market severely during the final four months last year. The European new car market remains near record-high levels.
Car Sales Per European Country in 2019 (Q1-Q3)
New passenger vehicle registrations in individual European Union (EU) and EFTA countries for the period January to September 2019 were as follows according to car sales statistics released by the ACEA:
|Country||Jan-Sep 2019||Jan-Sep 2018||% Change|
|EUROPEAN UNION (EU)||11,769,175||11,955,442||-1.6|
|EU + EFTA||12,115,927||12,308,191||-1.6|
Note: Excluding Malta
Car Sales in European Countries in 2019 (Q3)
During the first three quarters of 2019, Germany remained by far the largest new car market in Europe. The German new car market expanded by 2.5% – the only large European car market to have grown thus far this year.
The British new car market contracted by 2.5% thus far this year, as political uncertainty regarding not only Brexit but also future emission regulations dampened the market.
The French new car market contracted by 1.3% during the first three quarters of 2019 while the Italian market was down 1.6%.
The Spanish new car market shrunk by 7.4% during the first nine months of 2019. This was the weakest performance by the top five European new car markets. Car sales in Spain fell below a million units.
The Belgian car market thus far in 2019 was 3.6% weaker. In contrast, car sales in Poland increased by 1.9% – the only top-ten market apart from Germany to have expanded thus far this year.
New car sales in the Netherlands were down by 7.8%. Car sales in Austria were down 6.3% while the Swedish new car market contracted by 12.1% – the worst performance of the top ten largest new car markets in Europe. The Austrian and Swedish new car market thus swapped positions – the only change in size rank order of the ten largest car markets in Europe.
The best-performing new car markets in Europe during the first three quarters of 2019 were Lithuania, Romania, Greece, and Hungary.
The worst-performing new car markets in Europe during the first nine months of 2019 were Iceland, Sweden, and Finland.
Europe’s largest carmaker was again the Volkswagen Group with Volkwagen the top-selling brand and the VW Golf still Europe^s favorite car model.