AUGUST was a stonking month across Europe for new car sales. But for all the wrong reasons, reports industry analysts JATO Dynamics.
It was back in 1998 that more than 1m units were registered in August.
Year on year there was a 30% increase in August sales from 2017 (see chart below).
And while this may have given a warm feeling in some car sales HQs, the reason, explains the report’s author Felipe Munoz, was down to WLTP.
The backlog of cars awaiting WLTP approval meant that a whole bunch of cars had to be shifted onto the market before the September 01, 2018 deadline.
“Many makers decided to register their cars ahead of the deadline in order to clear their stocks of the units that they would not be allowed to sell after August 31.
“They got rid of their units in the easiest way: self-registrations, demo-sales or rentals which are a part of the business/fleet registrations, or through better retail-deals which make up part of the private registrations.”
Registrations through fleet channels was high, says JATO. In Germany, for example, the business/fleet registrations increased 37%; in France it jumped by 54%. Retail sales, meanwhile, were at usual levels.
“This is a clear indicator that last month’s increase was a result of more purchases coming from companies, dealers or fleets, pushed by the car makers who wanted to get rid of the non-compliant WLTP car units.
“It is also an alarming reminder of how easy it is for car makers to manipulate the registration results. Moreover, the results also confirm that many new cars did not comply with the new emissions rules in time for August 31.”
Read the full JATO Dynamics report
You can access the full JATO Dynamics report by Felipe Munoz by clicking on this link – The false positive effect of WLTP