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European April sales fall 1.8%

European new car sales fell by 1.8% in April to 22,742 units compared to the same month last year.

April sales also witnessed a 0.9% (51,760) drop year-to-date to 5,418,041 units, according to the latest figures from JATO Dynamics, the automotive data provider.

Volkswagen remains at the top of the table as Europe's best selling car brand during 2007, although new car sales of 133,857 units in April represent a 3,301 unit decrease on the same month last year for the brand.

Renault remains in second position, followed by Opel/Vauxhall and Ford, which recorded a 0.6% rise during April and increase of 1.8% year-to-date.

Peugeot saw new car sales rise by 1.3% in April thanks to strong sales of the 207 which helped maintain its position as the fifth best performing brand throughout Europe.

Other brands that recorded a rise in sales last month (April) were Fiat, Toyota, Audi, Skoda, Honda, Suzuki, Volvo and Kia, largely due to new model variants entering the market.

Despite the slump in its new car market, Germany recorded the highest sales in April with 264,871 units sold. Italy took second place with 206,743 units, France in third place with 172,754, Great Britain in fourth place with 170,163 and Spain in fifth position with 121,359 new car units sold.

Sales of the Peugeot 207 increased dramatically during April, recording a 373.2% increase on the same month last year, from 7,874 units to 37,260 in 2007. This was due to the limited availability of the model during 2006, its introductory year. Positioned at fifth place during March (2007), the Peugeot 207 is now at the top of the table in first place.

Many manufacturers benefited from the registration plate change in the UK during March, which as a core European market for the volume brands always has influence on overall sales figures. Therefore Opel/Vauxhall and Ford have both seen a reduction in new car registrations during April as the market settles back into a more typical trading pattern.

  • To download a run down of the top 10 performing brands in Europe for April 2007, click here.

  • To download a run down of the top 10 performing models for April 2007, click here.
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