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Europe auto sales up 1.2% in 2019

Auto sales across Europe grew 1.2% in 2019, according to data from the European Automobile Manufacturers Association.

New passenger car registrations for the year totaled 15.81 million units in the European Union and the European Free Trade Association, or EFTA, which includes Iceland, Norway and Switzerland. In 2018, full-year sales in EU and EFTA fell 0.4% to 15.6 million cars.

Among major European markets, Spain and the U.K. recorded sales declines but Germany, France and Italy all posted growth. Auto sales fell 4.8% in Spain and 2.4% in the U.K., while car sales in Germany rose 5%, followed by France at 1.9% and Italy at 0.3%.

Of the EFTA countries, Switzerland saw sales grow 3.9% but new car registrations in Iceland and Norway slid 34.8% and 3.8%, respectively.

Most of the major European automakers sold more cars in 2019 than in the previous year. Renault SA's sales climbed 1.1% to 1.63 million units, Volkswagen AG's sales rose 3.1% to 3.74 million units and Daimler AG's sales were up 5.3% to 984,781 units.

Meanwhile, Peugeot SA's car sales dropped 1.1% year over year to 2.43 million units.