General Motors' Opel/Vauxhall division sold 7 percent more cars in Europe last month. GM’s group sales in Europe fell 6 percent as the Chevrolet brand, which is being withdrawn from the region, scaled back deliveries. Chevrolet sales plunged 74 percent.
Fiat’s European sales rose 2 percent in April, with the namesake brand’s deliveries increasing 3 percent and demand at the Jeep SUV division surging 52 percent. Alfa Romeo sales were down 8 percent and Lancia declined 18 percent.
Part of Fiat’s strategy shift as it merges with Chrysler Group will be to drop out of volume carmaking in Europe, "an incredibly unrewarding market segment which has historically produced no margins and destroyed capital," to focus on upscale SUVs, sedans and sports cars, CEO Sergio Marchionne said earlier this month. "I am still negative on Europe," he added.
Among Asian automakers, Nissan's sales surged 21 percent, boosted by a new generation of the Qashqai crossover, its top seller in Europe. Kia sales were up 4 percent while Toyota brand's volume grew 2 percent. Honda posted an 8 percent drop, and Hyundai brand was down 4 percent.
BMW, Mercedes gain
BMW sold 1 percent more autos in Europe as a 3 percent gain at the namesake brand compensated for an 11 percent drop at the Mini small-car marque, which is updating its lineup.