2019 (Half Year) International: Worldwide Car Sales

June 2019: Brazil was the only major car market to expand with car sales lower in the USA, Russia, Japan, China, Europe and India.

Bugatti Veyron Geneva 2019

January to June 2019: During the first half year of 2019, car sales were lower in all major car markets in the world with the exception of Brazil where sales increased by 11%. The Japanese car market was flat while the US and Russian markets contracted by around 2%. In the European Union new passenger vehicle registrations were down by 3% but remained at relatively high levels. In India, new car sales during the first six months of 2019 were down by a tenth while China remained the world’s largest new car market despite a 14% contraction.

Car Sales Worldwide in 2019 (Half Year)

New light and passenger vehicle registrations in various major markets in the world monitored by the VDA were as follows in June 2019 and the first half year of 2019:

RegionJune 2019% Change1-6/2019% Change
Europe (EU+EFTA)1,491,300-7.98,426,200-3.1
*Light vehicles
Source: VDA

Continued Expansion of the Brazilian Car Market in 2019 (First Half)

Light vehicle registrations in Brazil increased by nearly a tenth in June 2019 – the only major new car market in the world to have expanded in June 2019.

Brazil is similarly the only major car market in the world with growth during the first half of 2019. New light vehicle sales in Brazil increased by 11% during the first semester of 2019.

Japan – Flat Car Sales in 2019 (Half Year)

New passenger vehicle registrations in Japan were flat during the first half of 2019 with a minor 0.3% contraction to 2,285,700 cars.

In June 2019, the Japanese new car market was 2.2% lower than a year ago with 367,000 sales.

USA – Weaker Car Sales in 2019 (First Semester)

Light vehicle sales in the USA contracted by 1.9% in both June 2019 and the first six months of the year. In June, the US market was slightly bigger than that of the European Union with 1.514,900 cars sold while for the first semester the US market with 8,412,900 was only slightly smaller. As before, the light truck sector expanded by 1% while traditional passenger car sales contracted by 9%.

Russia – Weaker Car Sales in 2019 (Half Year)

Light truck sales in Russia were 3.3% weaker in June 2019 compared to the same month in 2018. During the first six months of 2019, the Russian market contracted slightly by 2.4% to 828,800 vehicles.

Europe – Weak Car Sales in June 2019

New passenger vehicle registrations in the EU and EFTA were down by 8% in June 2019. The contraction was partly due to two fewer working days in June 2019 compared to 2018 in many European countries.

During the first half of 2019, the EU new car market contracted by 3.1% but remained near historic highs. Germany had its best first semester ever with car registrations up by 0.5% but all other major market contracted with France down 1.8%, Britain 3.4%, Italy down 3.5% and Spain down 5.7%.

India – Weak Car Sales in June 2019

The Indian new car market contracted sharply in June 2019 with sales 17.5% lower than in June 2018. The lower numbers were partly due to high numbers a year ago.

Thus far in 2019, the Indian new car market was a tenth weaker than a year ago.

China – Weak Car Sales in 2019 (Half Year)

China remained by far the largest single-country car market in the world despite sales contracting by 7.1% in June 2019 and 14% during the first half of 2019. The Chinese new car market was heavily influenced by uncertainty over import tariffs with the USA. In May 2019, the VDA revised its forecast for the Chinese new car market in full year 2019 downwards from flat to -4%.

Worldwide New Car Sales Statistics

About the author:

Henk Bekker

Henk Bekker is a freelance writer with over 20 years of experience in online writing. His best-selling cars website has been reporting car sales statistics since 2008 with classic car auction prices focusing on the most expensive automobiles sold at public auctions in the past decade. He also owns the travel websites European-Traveler.com and Lake Geneva Switzerland. Henk holds an MBA from Edinburgh Business School and an MSc in Finance from the University of London.