New passenger car sales fell by 4.1 percent in the European Union last month.
The region’s auto industry association said all major markets except Germany posted declines, but pointed out there was one fewer working day in the month than in April last year.
Honda was hit badly by the Japanese earthquake. Its sales fell by 34.3 percent as it had to cut production because of a lack of parts reaching its UK plant.
Its Japanese peers, which also have European manufacturing facilities, fared better. Nissan Motor sales rose 14.5 percent compared with April 2010, Mitsubishi’s sales rose 47.2 percent and Toyota Motor sales edged 0.3 percent lower.
In the first four months of the year sales grew in two-thirds of the markets but dips in the UK, Italy and Spain led to a 2.7 percent decline overall in the EU.
France’s PSA Peugeot Citroen and Renault saw sales fall 18.3 percent and 13.1 percent respectively in the European Union in April. In France, the effects of a government scrappage scheme to encourage drivers to replace their cars ended in March.
Volkswagen, Europe’s biggest car maker, enjoyed a 3.5 percent increase in April sales.