2017 (January to November) International: Car Sales Worldwide

November 2017: new passenger vehicle registrations increased in Europe, Russia, Brazil, China and the USA but car sales were lower in Japan.

Orange BMW 4 Series Cabriolet

In November 2017, car sales increased in most major regions of the world with Japan the only large car market with weaker sales . Passenger vehicle registrations in Russia, Brazil and India were up by double digits while the European new car market also remained strong. Light vehicle registrations in the USA were slightly higher in November 2017 while the Chinese new car market was flat. Year-to-date 2017, car sales increased the fastest in Russia, Brazil and India with the USA the only major car market with weaker sales this year .

Worldwide Car Sales in 2017 (January to November)

New passenger vehicle registrations in major car markets around the world monitored by the VDA were as follows in November 2017 and the first eleven months of 2017:

Region Nov 2017 % Change Jan-Nov 2017 % Change
Europe (EU+EFTA) 1,258,200 5.8 14,493,400 4.0
Russia* 152,300 15.0 1,430,200 11.7
USA* 1,388,000 1.3 15,539,500 -1.5
Japan 332,700 -2.7 4,056,100 6.4
Brazil* 197,600 13.8 1,970,700 10.1
India 175,400 14.3 2,989,400 9.2
China 2,548,200 0.4 21,596,200 2.6
*Light vehicles
Source: VDA

Russia – Strong Car Sales in November 2017

The Russian new car market continued its strong recovery in November 2017 with light vehicle sales up by 15% to 152,300 vehicles. November 2017 was the highest volume month for car sales in Russia since December 2014. November 2017 was also the ninth consecutive month of higher car sales in Russia and the sixth consecutive month of double-digit increases.

Year-to-date 2017, car sales in Russia increased by 11.7% to 1,430,200 vehicles – the fastest growth of any major car market.

India – Strong Car Sales in November 2017

After flat sales in October, the Indian new car market grew again strongly in November 2017 with sales up 14.3% to 175,400 cars.

Thus far in 2017, the Indian new car market expanded by 9.2% to 2,989,400 cars. The VDA recently predicted that the Indian new car market would surpass the German market during 2018.

Brazil – Continued Strong Recovery in Car Sales in November 2017

In November 2017, the Brazilian light vehicle market expanded for the seventh consecutive month when sales were up by 13.8% to 197,600 vehicles. Thus far in 2017, the Brazilian car market grew by 10.1% to 1,970,700 vehicles – only the Russian market expanded faster over the first eleven months of 2017.

Europe – Continued Growth in Car Sales in November 2017

New passenger vehicle registrations in the European Union (EU) and EFTA countries increase by 5.8% to 1,258,200 cars in November 2017. While the British car market was sharply down (-11%), the other four largest European new car markets expanded strongly: Spain (12%), France (10%), Germany (9%) and Italy (7%).

Thus far in 2017, new passenger vehicle registrations in Europe increased by 4% to 14,493,400 cars.

USA – Stronger Light Vehicle Sales in November 2017

In the USA, light vehicle sales increased by 1.3% to 1,388,000 vehicles in November 2017 – only the second month of growth in car sales in the USA thus far in 2017. The trend away from traditional passenger cars continued with such car sales down 9% while light trucks and SUV sales increased by 8% to take two-thirds of the US light vehicle market.

During the first 11 months of 2017, light vehicle sales in the USA contracted by 1.5% to 15,539,500 vehicles. The VDA predicts a similar contraction in 2018 but noted that the US market remains at very high volume levels.

China – Flat Car Sales in November 2017

In November 2017, the Chinese market expanded weakly for the second consecutive month when car sales increased by only 0.4% to 2,548,200 cars. Thus far in 2017, the Chinese new car market expanded by 2.6% to 21,596,200 cars – around 6 million more than the USA.

Japan – Weaker Car Sales in November 2017

New passenger vehicle registrations in Japan contracted by 2.7% to 332,700 cars in November 2017. This was the second consecutive month of weaker car sales in Japan following 12 months of expansion.

Year-to-date 2017, car sales in Japan increased by 6.4% to 4,056,100 cars.

See also the VDA’s prediction for 2018 car sales in major regions of the world.