EU car market data from ACEA shows that the European Union new car market fell to a historic low in January as the chips shortage continued to constrain the ability of manufacturers to supply the market.

EU passenger car registrations were down by 6% at 682,596 units, marking a new historic low in EU car sales for the first month of the year.

EU car market data shows various markets in central Europe posted gains last month, with Slovakia (+72.6%) and Romania (+55.5%) seeing the strongest growth, although Polish sales contracted by 10.2% in January. In Western Europe, on the other hand, almost all countries posted negative results. Looking at the four major EU car markets, double-digit losses were seen in Italy (-19.7%) and France (-18.6%), while only Germany posted solid growth (+8.5%) and Spain saw a modest gain (+1.0%).

On a larger measure of Europe that includes EFTA countries and the UK, the regional market was down by a smaller margin (-3.1%), the total boosted by the UK’s 27.5% January gain (versus locked down January 2021).

ACEA also published manufacture detail that showed VW Group as market leader, followed by Stellantis.