EU new car sales in August, traditionally a weaker month, grew by 10% to 819,125 units. This followed a 1.4% fall in July and takes the year to date figures for the first eight months to 9,787,760, a rise of 8.1%. Among the major markets, Italy was up 20.1%, Spain up 14.6%, Germany up 8.3%, France up 6.7% and the UK up 3.3% in August.
In Western Europe’s five main new car markets in August, sales of SUVs have continued to boom, accounting for 25.9% of the total market, a dramatic rise in the last 12 months. The SUV segment’s outstanding growth can largely be attributed to midsize and compact SUVs which posted increases in August of 55.1% and 36.1% respectively.
Volvo Drive Me
Volvo has started its Drive Me public autonomous driving experiment, putting the first of many planned XC90 models on the road. The XC90 SUV is the first in a series of autonomous cars that will be handed to real families in Gothenburg to be driven on public roads.
Four out of five preferred UK fleet cars are made in Germany, according to a new survey, with BMW holding the top popularity spot, followed by Volkswagen, Audi, Ford and Mercedes.
For 42% of those surveyed, vehicle efficiency was the most important factor while a third stated that it was emissions.