West European car registrations fell 8.4% year‐on‐year (YoY) in June. The selling rate slipped back to 14.2 mn units/year in June, from 14.4 mn units/year in May.
In Germany, sales decreased 4.7% YoY in June, but the market is the only one of Western Europe’s ‘Big 5’ to remain in positive YoY territory for H1 2019 as whole (+0.5%). The UK market was down 4.9% YoY in June, although the selling rate saw a welcome increase.
French car sales fell 4% YoY in June, although the selling rate continued to hover around the 2.2 mn units/year mark, with the YoY fall being a result of calendar effects reducing the number of selling days in June. Italian registrations were down by 2.1% YoY in June, while the selling rate slipped back to 1.8 mn units/year, the slowest pace since January. The Spanish market contracted by 8.3% YoY, as the selling rate remained below 1.3 mn units/year in what is usually one of the most important months of the year for Spanish sales.
For the year to date (YTD), Western European sales are down 3.5% YoY, although the selling rate has averaged a healthy 14.4 mn units/year. YoY growth will be difficult to find in July and August, as these months saw inflated sales in 2018 due to purchases being brought forward ahead of WLTP implementation. Later in the year, the YoY comparisons should snap back into positive territory, but it appears that it will be a case of sales playing catch‐up to reach a very similar level to 2018, with substantial growth likely to prove elusive this year.