EU new car sales rise 10.1% y/y in February, ACEA says

By Thomson Reuters Mar 21, 2024 | 2:03 AM

By Alessandro Parodi and Greta Rosen Fondahn

(Reuters) – New car sales in the European Union rose 10.1% year-on-year in February, with the bloc’s main markets all recording solid growth, Europe’s automakers association said on Thursday.

Registrations rose by 13% in France, 12.8% in Italy, 9.9% in Spain and 5.4% in Germany, consolidating similar trends seen in January, the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) said in a statement.

The four countries were also the main contributors to a 24.7% yearly jump in hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) sales in the EU, with the market share of HEVs in the bloc increasing to 28.9% from 25.5% a year ago, the data showed.

Hybrid vehicles, seen as a compromise between all-combustion and all-electric cars, are emerging as a preferred alternative to battery electric vehicles for consumers in Europe, the U.S and China.

Registrations for all electrified vehicles – fully electric models, plug-in hybrids and full hybrids – rose by 18.4% year-on-year and accounted for 48.2% of all new passenger car registrations in February, up from 44.8% in the previous year.

Total registrations at Volkswagen, Stellantis and Renault all rose in February, by 9.8%, 12.0% and 5.8% respectively. Electric car company Tesla recorded a 15.2% increase in February sales in the EU.

China’s SAIC Motor more than doubled sales in the EU, Britain and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA).

In the same month, its unit MG Motors unveiled the hybrid hatchback MG3 model for the European market, in a bid to offer a lower-emission model without the need for charging.

The number of new vehicles registered in the EU, Britain and the EFTA rose by 10.2% in February to 995,059 vehicles, according to the ACEA.

A 14% yearly increase in registrations in Britain was helped by strong demand in fleets and businesses, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said earlier this month.

(Reporting by Alessandro Parodi and Greta Rosen Fondahn, editing by Mark Potter)