Ay Caramba! Spanish Car Sales Sink 50%
If you think the U.S. auto market is bad, here’s something to cheer you up: it’s not as bad as Spain. November car sales are one half of their former self. Si, muchachos. According to Forbes, Iberian new car sales dipped by 49.6 percent. Explanation? In 2007, Spanish real estate cratered. Then, the country’s industry went anorexic. Spain now has the highest unemployment rate in Europe– 12.8 percent– and it’s expected to rise to 15 percent in 2009. That doesn’t bode well for Spain’s extremely shaky car industry, where another 50k citizens may go on the dole, pronto. Last week, the Spanish government announced a $1b package to resuscitate the nation’s car industry. With buyers on a general strike, it’s too little, too late. As far as brands go, in November VW was first, SEAT second, Ford third. For the year, Ford is leading before Peugeot and Citroen. Still, a perro flaco se le suben las pulgas.