Did you hear that sound? That was a sigh of relief coming from Germany. Germans are buying cars again. In November, they bought more cars than in October 2010, and even more than in November 2008. What’s more, November 2010 is only 6.2 percent below the Abwrackprämien-exaggerated November of the prior year. The usually very conservative Kraftfahrtbundesamt that released the official registration data even dares to prognosticate that “year and sales are expected to be 2.9 million cars.” Translation:
Germany is coming back to its usual 3 million cars per year level. Things are getting back to the old normal. As in the months before, bigger bore product from Porsche, BMW, Mercedes and Audi is on the rebound. Run-of-the-mill cars from VW, Opel, Ford are not selling as well as last year when they flew off the lots. For detailed data, refer to the download. All in all, Germany has survived carmageddon relatively unscathed. Cash-for-clunkers propelled sales into stratospheric heights in 2009. Sure, the crash followed, but after a little bouncing around, it settled in at pre-crisis levels. From December on out, growth numbers will be reported again, without having to resort to “well, compared to pre-crisis times…” In the meantime, exports skyrocketed with the effect that German car production will be significantly above the Abwrackprämien-heydays of 2009.
For the rest of Europe, Reuters says that car sales dropped 25.5 percent in Spain. In France, where there is still an €500 scrapping bonus in place, November sales dropped 10.8 percent. Expect a crash when the money is withdrawn. Full European data will be reported by ACEA around mid month.