Despite the increase in October, still a third less car sales compared to 2019

That sounds like good news. While the Mondial de l’Auto did not fill up despite its return after a 4-year absence from the great Paris Motor Show, new car sales in France rose slightly in October compared to 2021 for the third month in a row. Certainly, but they are still far below their pre-crisis level due to persistent shortages of electronic chips.

The sector registered 124,942 passenger vehicle registrations in October, up 5.45% from a year earlier, according to data released Tuesday by the Automotive Platform (PFA), which represents equipment manufacturers and suppliers. But the drop is 33.9% compared to October 2019, before the health crisis. In the first ten months of 2022, passenger car sales dropped 10.3%, according to this report. “We certainly have an increase compared to last year, but when you look at the market as it was in 2019, we have a third less vehicles,” François Roudier, head of security, told AFP.

“We still have the same causes, the semiconductor problem, which incidentally hit Europe a little harder than the other continents last month, with production stoppages in Italy, Spain and, of course, France, and the impossibility to deliver some models”, he said. noticed. Since spring 2021, the automotive market has been severely hampered in Europe and America by a number of logistical problems, including a shortage of semiconductors. These electronic chips, made mainly in Asia, are essential for the production of phones and laptops, but also for increasingly high-tech cars.

This third consecutive month of increase seems to at least show that the long market slump caused by the health crisis and then the shortage has finally come to an end. », declares Julien Billon, CEO of AAA Data. ” However, volumes remain at historically low levels. Inflation and shortages are still there, customers are still waiting for the transition to electric, and they are probably not ready to keep up with rising car prices. Furthermore, in the used market, the older models are those whose transactions have decreased the least, despite the restrictions that are to come in the ZFEs and the desire to renew the fleet. »

The leader Stellantis – with 32.5% of the French market – fell 14.5% in the first ten months of the year, with strong drops in particular by Citroën and Peugeot. Renault -24.3% market share- limited its decline to 7.8% in ten months. Lower in the rankings, Volkswagen Group sales fell 18.1%, Toyota 5.4% and BMW 6.6%. Stellantis and Renault fell in October, while most of their foreign competitors gained ground in the French market.

Diesel and gasoline accounted for 53.7% of light passenger car sales in France in the first ten months of the year, against 62.7% a year earlier. Sales of electric vehicles increased by around 35,000 units in the first ten months of 2022 compared to the same period in 2021. After the symbol of the month of September, October confirms the entry into a new stage of the energy transition, underline the specialists at Dados AAA. Indeed, for the second time, more 100% electric vehicles were put on the road – in just a few units – than diesel vehicles (16,861 electric vehicles against 16,850 diesel vehicles). Throughout the month and in the first ten months of the year, 100% electric models represent 13% of the market. A market that remains dominated by gasoline cars (38% share in 2022) and hybrids (28% share), despite the continued erosion of the plug-in hybrid segment (-12%). While volumes remain modest, alternative energies continue to grow (+59% to a 5% market share).

The second-hand market also dropped 10.3% in October with 439,421 transactions, due to the lack of recent equipment for sale, that is, a drop of 10.3% in the first ten months of the year, according to the company AAA Data. .

A bad sign for the health of the economy and the self-employed and artisan sector, PFA is also concerned about the drop in sales of light commercial vehicles, from 6.7% in October and 21.1% in ten months, this “which traditionally heralds tough economic times” according to Mr. Roudier.

with AFP