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European new car market up 9.5% in July

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New car registrations across Western European markets increased by 9.5% in July to 1.1 million units, according to the latest IHS Automotive forecast.

The performance in July pushed the year-to-date increase for the first seven months of the year from 8.1% in June to 8.4% year-on-year in July to 8 million units.

As reported by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, the UK’s growth in July was more moderate in comparison to other European markets with a 3.2% rise to 178,420 units.

Tim Urquhart, IHS automotive principal analyst, said: “All the major markets in Western Europe recorded positive increases, although France and the UK showed signs of slowing growth.

“The UK is beginning to suffer from a higher base comparison and the fact that private-sector sales are slowing down.”

The market was led by Germany as its new car market continues to increase with registrations increasing by 9.5% year-on-year to 290,196 units.

Spain’s scrappage scheme (which ended in July) helped the market post double digit growth in July with a boost of 23.5% to 109,922 units.

French new car registrations rose at the slowest rate of any of the large European markets, with a rise of 2.3% year-on-year to 147,132 units.

Italy recorded growth of 14.5% year-on-year to 131,489 units.

For the full year, IHS Automotive is predicting a registrations increase of 3.6% year-on-year to 3.13 million units, including a slowdown in the last five months of the year.

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