European car sales recover 21.4% in December

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European car sales recovered for the fourth straight month, raised by higher demands of premium and volume cars, ACEA said.

New car registrations climbed 21.4%, or 1,261,742 vehicles in the EU and EFTA countries in December, statistics showed.

The rise was partially caused by a low base of comparison with December 2018, when anti-emission laws were implemented and affected car registration.

The prospect of higher car taxes to take effect in 2020 spiked car sales in Netherlands and Sweden, where car registration climbed 113.9% and 109.3%, respectively.

Sales in Germany grew 19.5% and in France, 27.7%, while registrations in Britain bounced from last month to 3.4%.

Registration for Volkswagen group rose 21.1% while Renault climbed 23.1% in December. Demand for premium cars like Daimler grew 19.5% while BMW increased 16.4%.

A recovery in the fourth quarter helped raise 2019 registration to an overall rise of 1.2%, or 15.3 million units across EU, making it the sixth straight annual growth.

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