J.D. Power: 2012 Light Vehicle Market Grows

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J.D. Power and Associates - February 5, 2013

The global light-vehicle market remained stable in the final month of 2012 and overall deliveries rose, according to the latest J.D. Power and Associates market report.

Find out how global economies fared in 2012.

Here is a sampling of areas around the world:

North America

U.S. auto sales rose 13.4% in 2012, with sales reaching 14.5 million units. The outlook for 2013 remains stronger and sales are projected to reach nearly 15.1 million units (including retail and fleet unit sales), with 12.3 million retail deliveries. Canada’s sales slipped in December 2012, to equal a 1.54 million-unit pace, and weakness in the truck market held back sales—which were down 11% from December 2011.

Europe

New-vehicle demand fell in double digits during December in Western Europe, in part due to the European sovereign debt crisis that has made it difficult for as many as eight countries in the euro area to repay or refinance their government debt without assistance. For the calendar year of 2012, sales declined nearly 9% to 13.4 million units. Only the UK market recorded an increase in 2012. Sharp declines were evidenced in Italy and in Spain. The forecast for Europe’s auto market in 2013 is grim with another slump and a dip of 3.5% from 2012 projected. The newer Eastern European and Central European markets remained strong as sales totaled 4.82 million units—up 2.3% from 2011. In this region, Russia remained stable, while sales declined in Turkey and in Poland.

Japan

Japan has been a mature market for some years. However, during the last three months of 2012, the country posted month-over-month sales increases. A new government announced a major fiscal stimulus package, which could help raise auto sales this year. Also, the country has been in recovery from the devastating earthquake and tsunami that hampered auto production in 2011.

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