French April New Car Registrations Rise 569% After 2020 Drop

French new car registrations soared 569% in April to 140,428 vehicles, rebounding from a year earlier when the coronavirus pandemic shut showrooms and auto factories.

Registrations fell 25% compared with April 2019, showing that the vehicle market hasn’t yet recovered to pre-Covid levels, the CCFA association of carmakers said in a statement. The same trend was evident in the first four months of the year, it said, with sales through April up 51% from the same period in 2020, but down 21% from 2019.

The statistics add to evidence that, while the economy has rebounded from the worst of the pandemic, consumers remain reluctant to splash out on new cars. Economic output in the euro area contracted in the first three months of the year after a slow start to vaccination campaigns.

“The context is favorable for the second-hand market and the ever-increasing use of rental formulas for individuals,” the group said.

April was the second month of a rebound in car sales from last year’s pandemic-induced plunge. Registrations almost tripled in March.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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