Brakes on as new car sales slow across EU
13 April 2005, BRUSSELS – The number of new car purchases in Europe has fallen by 4.7 percent on last year's figures.
13 April 2005
BRUSSELS – The number of new car purchases in Europe has fallen by 4.7 percent on last year's figures.
According to the Association of European Car Builders (ACEA), the fall has been even sharper in Belgium, where purchases are down 14.9 percent.
The March figures were strongly influenced by the Easter holiday as car showrooms were closed for one to three days longer, says the organisation.
The figures also reflect the weakness of the economy in the first quarter of 2005.
During this period, sales went down 3.3 percent to 3987 cars. France is the only country in the five biggest European markets to have seen a rise of 2.5 percent.
In Germany figures went down by 0.4 percent, in Italy by 8.6 percent, in Spain by 3.6 percent and in the UK by 5.1 percent.
As far as car brands are concerned, Kia saw the biggest advances in March, with sales up 85 percent.
Many other makes saw a decrease in purchases, with Fiat, PSA and Renault being the worst affected.
VW had the biggest proportion of the European market in the first quarter of this year, at 17 percent, followed by PSA on 14.3 percent, Ford on 11.6 percent, General Motors on 10.7 percent, and Renault on 10 percent.
[Copyright Expatica 2005]
Subject: Belgian news