Car sales on the increase

Car sales in western Europe enjoyed a 6.8% year on year rise in April, according to IHS Automotive.

Sales of 1,200,253 units continued a strong start to 2016, with year-to-date sales in the region increasing by 7.4% to 4,859,085.

April’s sales results meant that the seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) for the region crept up to its highest level since November 2009 at the rate of 14.1 million units.

The German passenger car market registered very positive sales in April with an 8.4% increase in sales volumes to 315,921 (year-to-date sales 1,107,345 units), while in France registrations of 181,830 units represented a 6.5% year on year growth.

Elsewhere, Italy (166,966 units) and Spain (100,281 units) both recorded substantial growth rates of 11.5% and 21.2% respectively, but the UK passenger car market returned to a lower rate of growth in April (2%) after March’s record sales volume, fuelled by the biannual plate change.