Europe hit by falling car sales

Europe hit by falling car sales

Car sales in Europe have continued to fall during the first eight months in 2013.

The European Auto Manufacturers' Association reported that the number of cars sold between January and August had fallen to its lowest total since records began in 1990.

Some 7.8 million fewer cars were sold throughout the continent compared to the same period last year, marking a drop of 5.2%.

The number of new cars registered in August also fell by around 5% with 653,872 brand new vehicles sold last month.

Despite the economy growing by 0.4% throughout the European Union in the second quarter of this year, the economic improvement has not translated into car sales.

Unemployment across the 28-member ground remains stubbornly high at 11%, meaning that many consumers are reluctant or unable to buy a new car.

Moderately-priced vehicles have been particularly hit in debt-ridden economies such as Spain and Greece, which have seen soaring rates of unemployment.

Even Germany, Europe's financial powerhouse, saw a tailing off in new car registrations falling by 5.5% in August.

France (10.5%), Spain (18.3%) and Italy (6.6%) all saw a dip in new car sales as well last month.

Britain was the only major European auto market to record a rise in new registrations, rising 10.5% in August.

Copyright Press Association 2013