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Western European car registrations grow 9 percent in April

11 May 2018 Ian Fletcher

Passenger car registrations in Western Europe are anticipated to have grown by 9.2% year on year (y/y) in April, according to the latest forecasts released by IHS Markit

  • Implications: April was a highly positive month for Western European passenger car registrations, with all markets registering some degree of improvement. The main factor behind this trend was additional working days recorded, with some markets benefiting from up to two additional days due to the Easter weekend holiday in 2018 partly falling in March rather than entirely within April during 2017.
  • Outlook: For the region as a whole, IHS Markit forecasts that registrations will increase by 1.1% y/y to 14.5 million units before beginning to decline the following year.

IHS Markit perspective

The Western European passenger car market recorded strong gains during April following a period of weakness in March, according to IHS Markit's latest Western European forecast. Registrations for the month increased by 9.2% year on year (y/y) to 1,224,569 units, bringing registrations in the year to date (YTD) to 5,145,678 units and thus a gain of 1.8% y/y. Furthermore, the seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) reached 14.47 million units.

Germany was the largest passenger car market this month, posting a strong increase of 8.0% y/y to 314,055 units. This helped its registrations in the first four months of the year to increase by 5.0% y/y to 1,192,666 units.

The French passenger car market registered 187,396 registrations in April, marking an increase of 9.0% y/y. The improvement this month helped the market to rise by 4.4% y/y in the YTD to 744,238 units.

In Italy, the passenger car market rebounded after two months of decline, with registrations during the month increasing by 6.5% y/y to 171,379 units. Italy's YTD growth has returned to positive territory, with a gain of 0.2% y/y to 745,509 units.

The Spanish passenger car market also improved in April, with registrations increasing by 12.3% y/y to 113,816 units. Overall, sales this month contributed to the gain observed in the YTD, which is now up by 11.0% y/y to 454,127 units with a growth rate of 11.0% y/y.

The UK passenger car market made its first gain for 12 months during April. Registrations increased by 10.4% y/y to 167,911 units; however, the improvement in topline registrations this month did little to boost YTD performance - particularly considering the significant falls recorded in the big-volume month of March - and as a result this is now down by 8.8% y/y to 886,400 units.

For the region as a whole, IHS Markit forecasts that registrations will increase by 1.1% y/y to 14.5 million units before beginning to decline the following year.

Read the full article

The above article is an excerpt from AutoIntelligence Daily by IHS Markit. AutoIntelligence Daily provides same-day analysis of automotive news, events and trends. Get a free trial and read the full article.

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