Renault remains the first brand in the hearts of drivers in France, ahead of Peugeot and Citroën.

In a sector shaken by the imperatives of ecological transition and a turnaround in the global economy, 2019 was a good year for the new vehicle market in France, even if the profession expects a slight decline in 2020. The number registrations reached 2,693,000, of which 2,214,000 for individuals (+ 1.88%), according to the annual report published on Wednesday 1 st  January by the car of french manufacturers (CCFA). An increase all the more remarkable since the market had already been supported for four years.

This result is explained by the growth in sales in December: they rose by 27.7% (211,193 vehicles), manufacturers of cars flowing struck a malus from the 1 st  of January. This destocking benefited the big displacements and the German manufacturers, Volkswagen at the head, which seems to have turned the page of the “dieselgate” (the scandal of the faked diesel engines).

Foreign cars have nibbled market shares and represent 43.19% (+ 0.6%). The French brands of PSA (Citroën, Peugeot, DS and Opel) and Renault (Renault, Dacia and Alpine) resisted: their sales increased by 0.88% (1.25 million vehicles), representing a market share 56.8% (compared to 57.4% the previous year), well above the low point of ten years ago (53%).

PSA captured 32% of the market and the lozenge firm, which is growing more slowly, 24.8%. But it is Renault which remains the first brand in the hearts of French motorists, with 407,159 cars launched on the roads, followed by Peugeot (379,582 units) and Citroën (235,110 units), while Volkswagen takes fourth place at Dacia (Renault group), with 149,105 vehicles. German manufacturers posted increases of 10%, while the Japanese Nissan suffered (- 30%), as did FCA (Fiat, Jeep, etc.), which fell 12.75%.

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New CO 2 emission standard

The deceleration in diesel sales is confirmed: its market share has fallen to 34%. It was 39% in 2018, 64% in 2014 and 72% at its highest level in 2011-2012. This threatens part of the sector in France, as shown by the difficulties of the Bosch factory in Rodez (Aveyron), specializing in injectors for diesel engines. In total, 15,000 jobs are threatened, says Luc Chatel, president of the automotive platform, which represents the manufacturers and equipment manufacturers and demands a “contingency plan” from the State.