PARIS (Bloomberg) -- Renault Group reported a 5 percent gain in global auto sales in the first half of 2014 on stronger demand for the budget Dacia brand.
Deliveries advanced to 1.37 million cars and light commercial vehicles from 1.3 million a year earlier, the company said today in a statement.
Demand for Dacia's two best-selling cars in Europe, the revamped Duster SUV and the Sandero hatchback, fueled a 24 percent jump in the brand's first-half sales in the region. The no-frills nameplate helped Renault Group's European sales climb 18 percent in the period to 776,236, outpacing an overall market increase of 7 percent.
Deliveries in Russia, Renault's third-biggest market, fell 8 percent. The French manufacturer, together with its Japanese partner Nissan Motor Corp., have made a big bet on the future of the country's car market by taking control of AvtoVAZ, the maker of Lada models and Russia's largest auto producer.
Increased growth forecast
Renault, which will release first-half financial details on July 29, increased its forecast for 2014 growth in industrywide European car sales to a range of 3 percent to 4 percent from a previous estimate of 2 percent to 3 percent.