Summer Car Sales in Europe Soar, Jeep Sales Rise 160%

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The European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) on Wednesday reported new vehicle registration totals in the European Union for the months of July and August. July sales rose by 10.5% compared with July 2017 sales, and August sales rose a blistering 31.2%. July sales totaled nearly 1.3 million new cars sold and August, typically the slowest month of the year for sales, accounted for 1.1 million sales.

According to the ACEA, the likely reason for the jump is a new Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP) that took effect September 1 for all new cars. Some automakers cut prices on pre-WLTP models to clear out inventory ahead of the new rule.

New registrations rose by 5.2% in June, following a rise of less than 1% year over year in May and a 5.9% increase in April. For the first eight months of the year, sales are up 6.2% to nearly 10.9 million units.

Of the Detroit Three, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (NYSE: FCAU) saw its August market share in the EU rise to 6.3% from 5.9% year over year. Unit sales totaled 71,690, up by 39.8% year over year. Sales of the Fiat brand rose by 23.7% while Jeep sales soared by 161.5%.

Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) sold 58,038 units in August, a year-over-year increase of 16.9% for the month. The company’s June market share rang in at 5.1%, down from 5.7% last year.

General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) has left the EU market and had sales of just 255 units in June. GM stopped selling vehicles in Europe in July of last year.

The top-selling maker in the EU is Volkswagen, which sold 307,600 vehicles in August, up 41% year over year for the month. VW’s market share for the month totaled 27.1%, up from 25.2% in August 2017.

PSA Group, makers of Peugeot and Citroen among other brands, posted an August sales increase of 17.9% to 157,550 units. The company’s market share dropped from 15.4% to 13.9%.

Renault Group posted a volume increase of 57.8% to 140,052 units in August and its year-over-year share rose from 10.3% to 12.3% in the month.

BMW Group’s market share dropped in August from 6.4% a year ago to 5.2%. The company sold 59,150 units last month, up 6.5% compared with year-ago August sales of 55,540.

Daimler posted a market share decline last month, slipping from 6.9% in August 2017 to 5.1% with sales totaling 58,227 units. On a volume basis, sales fell 2.8%.

Toyota Motor Corp. (NYSE: TM) posted market share of 4.5% in August, down from 4.9% a year ago. Sales volume rose by 19.4% to 50,627 units.

For the month of August, Germany was the volume leader with more than 316,405 units sold (up 24.7% year over year for the month), followed by France with sales of more than 150,000 (up 40%), Spain with nearly 108,000 sales (up 31.2%) and the United Kingdom with more than 94,000 vehicles sold (up 23.1%).

EU sales totaled 15.14 million units in 2017 compared with 2016 sales for the 27 EU members of 14.64 million, up 3.4% compared with 2016 unit sales.