EU passenger car registrations down 7.5% in January: ACEA

European Union passenger car registrations fell by 7.5% year on year to 956,779 units in January, the European automobile manufacturers association, ACEA, said Tuesday.

The January figures, and the year-earlier comparison, reflect the 27-member EU, excluding the UK.

“Although the UK was still part of the EU in January 2020, ACEA has decided to base the entire 2020 cycle of press releases — including the month of January — on the new EU27 aggregate (excluding the UK),” the group said, adding that this will improve clarity in reporting data.

Major taxation changes announced by some EU member states for 2020, which pulled registrations forward into December 2019, were the key drivers behind the January fall, ACEA said.

Other contributing factors included weakening global economic conditions and uncertainty caused by the UK’s departure from the EU.

“As a result, demand for new passenger cars in the four major EU markets fell during the first month of 2020. France posted the sharpest drop (13.4%), followed by Spain (7.6%), Germany (7.3%) and Italy (5.9%),” ACEA said.

— Andy Blamey