The European Union passenger vehicles demand in January-September grew by 2.5 percent year-on-year, the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA) announced on Wednesday.
The ACEA said new passenger car registrations totaled around 12 million during the first nine months of 2018.
'Looking at the five biggest markets, demand went up in Spain (11.7 percent), France (6.5 percent) and Germany (2.4 percent), while car sales contracted in Italy (down 2.8 percent) and in the United Kingdom (down 7.5 percent),' the association said.
During the nine-month period, the biggest share -- with 24.2 percent in passenger car sales in the 28-member EU bloc -- was held by the VW Group, of which major brands are Volkswagen, Audi, Skoda, Seat and Porsche.
Sales of the VW Group saw an annual hike of 5.6 percent, reaching around 2.9 million units in first nine months of the year.
The PSA Group -- which owns the Peugeot, Citroen, and Opel brands -- and the Renault Group -- which owns the Renault, Dacia, Lada and Alpine brands -- followed with 16.2 percent and 10.7 percent of car sales, respectively.
In 2017, over 15 million new passenger cars were sold in the EU, up 3.4 percent from the previous year.
The EU is the main automotive export market for Turkey, where the world’s prominent automotive manufacturers including Fiat, Ford, Honda, Hyundai, Renault and Toyota have operations.
Last year, nearly 80 percent of Turkey's total automotive exports were made to EU countries amounting to $22 billion, marking a 17 percent rise, year-on-year.
The ACEA will release its next report on the passenger car registrations on Nov. 15.
By Jeyhun Aliyev