European car sales plunge

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The Independent Online

This year has seen the slowest car sales on record in Europe, with the UK being the only country where drivers bought more new motors than in 2012.

Between January and August, sales slipped 3.6 per cent in Spain, 6.6 per cent in Germany, 9 per cent in Italy and a hefty 9.8 per cent in France, the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association said.

UK sales were up 10.44 per cent over the eight months.

Peugeot Citroen has suffered a 12.3 per cent sales slump so far this year, and VW saw sales fall 4.6 per cent.

Fiat, Ford, General Motors and Peugeot are expected to post a combined €5bn (£4.2bn) loss this year in Europe.

But premium brands including BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Jaguar Land Rover have seen sales grow.