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European car sales stall

European car sales stall
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Car sales in Europe fell slightly in October, with 1.14 million vehicles registered.

Total sales were down by 0.3 percent for all of Europe (EU member states plus Iceland, Norway and Switzerland) and 0.02 percent for the countries of the European Union.

Full details from the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association here (PDF).

Among top markets they slid 5.6 percent in Germany and 4.0 percent in France.

In Italy sales rose by nearly 10 percent, in Spain by 4.0 percent and Britain 1.4 percent.

The October numbers dampened the European auto market’s performance for the year so far – now amounting to 6.9 percent year-on-year growth for January-October and 7.2 percent for the European Union.

Analyst Tom Stevenson with Fidelity Worldwide Investment commented: “The European car market is really divided between the centre and the periphery. France and Germany saw big declines while Spain and Italy saw pretty good increase, in the UK car sales were really flat. So I think the future of the European car market is really dependent on what happens in Germany and France.”

Volkswagen group – Europe’s biggest carmaker – accounted for almost a quarter of the region’s sales in October, but it continues to lose market share down for the 14th straight month since its emissions-cheating scandal was revealed in September last year.

France’s PSA Peugeot Citroen recorded the region’s biggest sales drop – down 7.4 percent compared to the same period last year.