17.04.2013 FEW POSITIVES FOR FIAT GROUP IN EUROPE DURING MARCH

FIAT 500L 2014

Fiat Group Automobiles' performance across Europe last month was driven by the Fiat brand which bucked the market to rise four and a half thousand units and 7.7 percent to 63,149 units. As a result the Fiat brand's market share climbed by 0.8 percent to 4.7 percent.

Fiat Group sold 80,703 cars in Europe last month which was just less than one thousand units adrift of the same month last year and that allowed it to outperform the overall market and raise its year-on-year market share, albeit to 6 percent.

However, while the performance on paper told one story, the reality was much more bleak as last year Fiat Group's sales were hit by a car transporter drivers' strike in Italy that saw European sales dropping by a quarter, and in fact last month it was a long way adrift of usual closest rivals, including GM, Ford and BMW, in volume terms, this trio of rivals also partly driven upwards by a boost from the UK where Fiat Group Automobiles (FGA) now only retains a niche status.

In total, 1,346,889 new passenger cars were sold in Europe (counting the 27 EU member nations plus the EFTA signatories) last month, a fall of 10.3 percent year-on-year which mirrored the continent's year long performance.

FGA's performance across Europe last month was driven by the Fiat brand which bucked the market to rise four and a half thousand units and 7.7 percent to 63,149 units. As a result the Fiat brand's market share climbed by 0.8 percent to 4.7 percent.

The good news ended there however and the niche brands all posted double digit losses in March despite the negative effects of last year. Lancia (which includes a handful of Chrysler brand sales in its figures) lost more than one thousand five hundred sales and 17.7 percent year-on-year to 7,652 units while Alfa Romeo fell three thousand units and 29.5 percent to 7,180 units.

The token brands also lost ground, Jeep lost a quarter of its sales to end last month on 2,176 units while the Fiat Group's two luxury/performance brands, Ferrari and Maserati, sold a combined 546 cars, down 16.9 percent.

After the first quarter of the year, 3,096,266 new cars have been sold in Europe, down 9.7 percent on the same period last year.

The Fiat Group mirrors the overall market direction, it is down twenty thousand units and 9.1 percent to 197,806 units for the year-to-date. That however raises its market share for Q1 slightly by 0.1 percent year-on-year to 197,806 units.

The Fiat brand is FGA's best performer in Europe so far this year, it is flat (-0.3 percent) after three months and is on 153,807 units, while its market share for Q1 is up half a point to 5.0 percent.

Lancia is on 19,336 units for the year-to-date, down eight thousand units and 29.1 percent while its first quarter market share drops by 0.2 percent to 0.6 percent. Alfa Romeo is FGA's biggest loser so far this year in year-on-year terms, down just under ten thousand units and 35.5 percent to 17,545 units, its market share for the first quarter also mirroring Lancia's, dropping by 0.2 per net year-on-year to 0.6 percent.

The Fiat Group's nominal brands all lose ground for the year-to-date, Jeep drops 18.8 percent to 6,092 units for a 0.2 percent share of the European market, while Ferrari and Maserati have notched up combined sales of 1,026 units, down 29.2 percent on the opening three months of 2012.
 

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