European Auto Sales Slide in January for Fifth Straight Month

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The European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) on Friday reported new vehicle registration totals in the European Union (EU) for the month of January. Sales declined by 4.6% year over year in the month. Registrations (sales) fell for the fifth consecutive month.

Despite the year-over-year slump, EU sales of 1.2 million units in January was the second-highest total on record for the month. Sales fell in all five of the EU’s five major markets: Spain by 8%, Italy by 7.5%, the United Kingdom by 1.6%, Germany by 1.4% and France by 1.1%.

Of the Detroit Three, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (NYSE: FCAU) saw its January market share in the EU dip from 6.7% in 2018 to 6.0%. Unit sales totaled 71,310, down by 14.9% year over year. Sales of the Fiat brand fell by 19.6%, while Jeep sales dropped by 1.9%.

Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) sold 77,222 units in January, a year-over-year decline of 6.5% for the month. The company’s January market share rang in at 6.5%, down from 6.6% a year ago.

General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) left the European auto market in 2017 but announced this morning that it would be selling electric bicycles in three EU countries with deliveries beginning next quarter.

The top-selling maker in the EU is Volkswagen, which sold 288,266 vehicles in January, down 6.5% year over year for the month. VW’s market share for the month totaled 24.1%, down from 24.6% in January 2018.

PSA Group, makers of Peugeot, Citroen and other brands, posted a January sales decline of 1.9% to 204,199 units. The company’s market share increased from 16.6% to 17.1% for the month.

Renault Group posted a volume decline of 0.7% to 115,794 units in January, and its year-over-year share increased from 9.3% to 9.7%.

BMW Group’s market share ticked up year over year from 5.8% to 5.9% in January. The company sold 70,942 units last month, down by 2.7% compared with year-ago January sales of 72,883.

Daimler posted a market share increase last month, rising from 5.8% in January 2018 to 6.0%, with sales totaling 71,152 units. On a volume basis, sales slipped by 1.3% year over year.

Toyota Motor Corp. (NYSE: TM) posted market share of 5.3% in January, down by 0.1 percentage points compared with a year ago. Sales volume dropped by 5.4% to 63,584 units.

For the month of January, Germany was the volume leader with more than 265,000 units sold, down 1.4% year over year for the month. France posted January sales of just over 155,000, down 1.1% for the month. In the United Kingdom, monthly sales dropped by 1.6% to 161,000 units. Italy saw unit sales tumble by 7.5% in January to just under 165,000.

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