Global new car market up 4.7% for September 2014 – Polk data

22 October 2014 #SMMT News

Based on results, which are preliminary in some cases, passenger vehicle sales for the global new car market in September were up around 4.7% from the year before. YTD, sales in the first nine months of this year were up around 2.62 million units over the same period in 2013 (up 4.6%). The US, Western Europe and especially Asia made positive contributions, while sales in Eastern Europe and Latin America were down once again.

Polk 1

Sales in the Asia/Pacific region showed strong growth once again in September (up 6.3%). The Chinese market grew at a faster pace in September after growth flagged somewhat in August. Japanese sales were down once again, although the losses were milder than last month, as sales have been hurt by the after-effects of the VAT hike in April.

Sales in the NAFTA region were up once again thanks to good economic news and attractive automotive financing offers. Registrations are up 5.0% YTD over the year before.

Sales in Latin America were down significantly once again (down 6.5% in September and 8.7% YTD). Sales in the region’s two largest markets, Argentina and especially Brazil were down sharply from the year before once again.

Sales in Western Europe were up 6.4% in September (up 5.2% YTD). This growth was the result of continuing growth in the UK and Spain (incentives), as well as strong registrations in Germany

The civil war in Ukraine, as well as the sanctions imposed on Russia, weighed down sales in the Eastern European market (September: down 8.6%; YTD: down 9.4%).


2014: New registrations expected to be 78.3 million units

Global new registrations will once again set a new record in 2014, growing by about 3.8% over 2013.

Since we are already so deep into the year, of course, the forecast for the year as a whole will be subject to only minor fluctuations. The forecasts for Asia and Eastern Europe have been reduced slightly, while the outlook for Africa and NAFTA have been raised.

Polk 3

New registrations in the Asia/Pacific region will increase by 6.9% in 2014 compared to 2013. In China alone, sales in the current year will be up around 1.81 million units from the year before. However, the lingering effects of the VAT rate increase in April of this year are now becoming apparent in the Japanese market, now that some time has passed.

New registrations in the NAFTA region are expected to continue to climb to about 19.2 million units (up 5.4%). Sales in the Latin American markets, on the other hand, will fall to about 5.4 million units (down 9.2%).

Sales will be down in Eastern Europe as well (down 9.6%). The region’s largest market, Russia, is currently suffering from the impact of the Crimean crisis (flight of capital out of the country, sanctions), a weakening currency (inflation) and low oil prices.

Passenger vehicle demand in Western Europe, on the other hand, will be up once again in 2014 (up 4.6%), as gains in markets like the United Kingdom and Germany, as well as in Southern Europe (especially Spain), will more than make up for losses in relatively small markets like the Netherlands, Switzerland and Austria (2014: new registrations of 12.1 million units).

Continued growth in Asia and the NAFTA region, as well as the progressing recovery in Western Europe, will push global passenger vehicle sales over the 80 million-unit mark for the first time in 2015. However, sales in Eastern Europe and Latin America will grow at just a slow pace for the time being.

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