LMC Automotive offers timely reporting of the latest data sets and estimates for several automotive markets around the world including, global car sales, the Chinese, Indian and ASEAN automotive markets and the Western European Diesel market.
Global Light Vehicle sales fell by 10.4% year-on-year (YoY) in January, with the selling rate coming in at a lacklustre 87.8 mn units/year, below the 2019 annual result. Despite YoY sales increasing in Eastern Europe, elsewhere, results were weak. The unimpressive results are due to a number of factors, including the implementation of CO2 targets in the EU and the expiration of a key tax cut in South Korea.
West European car registrations fell by 7.7% year-on-year in January. With new binding EU emissions regulations coming into effect at the start of 2020, January suffered the consequences of a pull forward in registrations into December 2019, as OEMs looked to avoid a portion of vehicles from being included in the 2020 CO2. The selling rate for the region fell to 13.4 mn units/year in January.
November’s W. Europe diesel car market is confirmed at 31.6% of new car sales and provisional data indicate that December returned a figure of 30.9%, leading to a full‐year value of 32.0% for 2019. December’s figure may have been stronger were it not for the pull forward of high‐CO2 models from 2020 into December 2019 to avoid them counting towards the impending CO2 target.
The ASEAN Light Vehicle market closed 2019 with a total of 3.33 mn units sold, marking a slight 1% decline from 2018. Last year’s negative result was due to lower demand in the region’s two leading markets of Thailand and Indonesia, with both dropping below the 1 mn-unit mark to 986k and 948k, respectively. LV sales in Thailand contracted by 3% in 2019, with declines reported from June until December.
China’s Passenger Vehicle sales (i.e., wholesales) fell by 0.5% year-on-year to 2.29 mn units in December 2019, while the Light Commercial Vehicle segment grew by 2.7% YoY to 0.36 mn units. The overall Light Vehicle market ended the month with a slight 0.1% YoY decline, on total sales of 2.65 mn units. In short, China’s LV market narrowly missed registering a positive result in the final month of last year.
The Indian market finished a turbulent 2019 on a strong note. Improving at the start of Q4 2019, Light Vehicle wholesales slipped by 1% year-on-year to 281k units in December. Passenger Vehicle sales inched up by 3% YoY to 230k units, but demand for Light Commercial Vehicles with GVW of up to 6 tonnes fell by 15% YoY to 51k units. On a SAAR basis, LV sales stood at 3.74 mn units in December.