BRUSSELS—New European Union passenger car registrations rose 87.3 percent year-on-year in the month of March, due mainly to the exceptionally low base of comparison caused by the strict COVID-19 lockdowns last year.
About 1.06 million new cars were sold in the EU last month, compared to 567,253 during the same month in 2020, according to the latest figures by the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA).
Triple-digit gains were posted by three of the four largest EU markets, with Italy seeing the biggest increase at 497.2 percent, ACEA said April 16.
France, Spain and Germany also saw strong gains at 191.7 percent, 128 percent and 35.9 percent respectively.
Over the first quarter of 2021, EU demand for new cars grew by 3.2 percent to reach 2.6 million units registered in total.
Despite steep declines during the first two months of the year, March's strong results offset the negative trend, ACEA said.
Looking at the major EU markets, last month's gains brought the cumulative performances of Italy and France into positive territory at 28.7 percent and 21.1 percent respectively.
Spain and German posted overall declines at 14.9 percent and 6.4 percent, although the downtrend significantly slowed down in March.