European car sales dropped for the sixth straight year in 2013, but there were signs of improvement.
According to the European carmaker’s association, ACEA, sales of new cars shrank 1.7 per cent to 11.8 million – the lowest level since 1995 and a 26 per cent contraction from 2007 sales.
But the full-year contraction was less than automakers had anticipated at the beginning of the year, ACEA said. ACEA has reported four-straight months of market gains, with a surge of 13.3 per cent in December that included better sales in all major markets. Even Italy – which is ranked No. 4 and where car sales have been at 30-year lows – saw sales rise modestly.
The picture for the full year was more mixed. ACEA said: Britain posted a double-digit increase, Spain posted small gains, while sales slumped in Germany, France, and Italy.