European new car sales drop nearly 8% in first half of 2019

Nissan and Volvo posted the largest declines

PARIS — European car sales dropped 7.9% in June, led by bigger declines for Nissan, Volvo and Fiat Chrysler (FCA), according to industry data published on Wednesday.

Registrations fell to 1.49 million cars last month from 1.62 million a year earlier across the European Union and EFTA countries, the Brussels-based Association of European Carmakers said in a statement. Calendar effects resulted in two fewer sales days in most markets, accentuating the decline.

Registrations for the first half closed 3.1% lower, ACEA said. For European carmakers, weakening demand at home compounds the pressure from a sharper contraction in China and emerging markets that may yet bring more profit warnings.

Nissan’s aging model lineup contributed to a 26.6% June sales slump while Volvo Cars, owned by China’s Geely, saw deliveries tumble 21.7%.

Registrations also fell 13.5% last month at FCA, 10.1% at BMW, 9.6% at Volkswagen Group and 8.2% for both Mercedes parent Daimler and France’s PSA Group. The Peugeot maker’s domestic rival Renault suffered less, posting a 3.9% decline.

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