February new car registrations are out, published by EU auto manufacturer umbrella organization ACEA. EU passenger car registrations were up 7.3 percent for the month, again mostly driven by a re-awakening South (Spain +26.1 percent, Italy +13.2 percent). Germany (+6.6 percent) and France (+4.5 percent) finally show a little life.
Among the manufacturers, Volkswagen (+ 11.1 percent), FCA (+11.9 percent), BMW (+16.8 percent), and Daimler (+13.2 percent) profited. GM Europe, a.k.a. the Opel Group, lost 7.8 percent, due to the shutdown of Chevrolet in Europe. Sales of Opel proper were up 6.3 percent. Among the Japanese, Nissan gained a surprising 28.8 percent. Nissan is fast approaching Toyota in EU market share.
In the first two months of the year, passenger car registrations were up 7.0 percent. The ACEA celebrates the data as being up in the “eighteenth consecutive month.” However, the EU is up from an extremely low level. And as we have seen in Auto Industry 101.2, the European auto industry has seen much better days ten years ago. Overall, the EU new car market is in a seminal downtrend
A complete list of February and YTD EU passenger vehicle sales can be found here.