(Updates with car sales details)
BRUSSELS Feb 8 Car sales in the European Union
are expected to grow by about 1 percent in 2017, a sharp
slowdown from last year, the European Automobile Manufacturers
Association (ACEA) said on Wednesday.
New passenger car registrations rose 6.8 percent in 2016 to
14.6 million vehicles, the highest volume in nine years and the
third consecutive year of expansion.
"However, uncertainty is expected to overshadow 2017, when a
slowdown in EU car sales is likely with growth at around 1
percent," ACEA said, citing political developments.
France, Germany and the Netherlands hold elections this
year, while Britain is expected to trigger negotiations to leave
the European Union.
All five major EU markets recorded gains last year, with
growth strongest in Italy and Spain. Sales only fell in the
Netherlands and, outside the EU, in Switzerland.
Volkswagen retained the top spot, although sales
of the Volkswagen brand declined. Renault overtook PSA
Group, the maker of Peugeot and Citroen, to take
The manufacturers association has been cautious in its car
sales forecasts in previous years, predicting 2 percent growth
at the start of last year before revising it up to 5 percent in
(Reporting by Philip Blenkinsop; editing by Robin Emmott and