Editor's note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that first-quarter registrations were up 6.4 percent to 1.04 million. This information refers to the first four months.
FRANKFURT -- Passenger-car registrations in Germany rose 6.3 percent in April to 291,395, the German motor transport authority said on Tuesday.
Germany joined France, Italy and Spain in reporting higher new-car registrations last month as increased consumer confidence in Europe’s major markets continues to drive a sales rebound.
IHS Automotive analyst Ian Fletcher said the German market is being underpinned by the growing economy, along with high levels of discounting and new models such as the Opel Corsa, VW Passat and Mercedes C class.
IHS forecasts that sales will increase by 3.3 percent to 3.14 million units for the full year with growth slowing over the rest of the year. Sales last year rose 3 percent to 3.04 million. Registrations through April were up 6.4 percent to 1.04 million.
Most automakers posted gains in Germany last month, led by Mitsubishi, whose sales soared by 106 percent. Jeep registrations jumped 79 percent, while Land Rover sales increased 22 percent and Smart's volume was up 49 percent.
Market leader Volkswagen's registrations rose 3.5 percent while Opel sold 7.1 percent more cars. Chevrolet sales dropped 77 percent as General Motors prepares to remove the brand from Europe this year. Sales of Ford vehicles were up 13 percent.
Among premium brands, BMW sales increased by 8.4 percent while Audi sales rose by 4.9 percent. Mercedes-Benz registrations dropped 4.2 percent.
- Download PDF, above right, for Germany car sales by brand for April and 4 months.
France, Spain and Italy
France's car sales rose 2.3 percent in April to reach 170,768, the CCFA industry association said on Monday.
Spanish registrations increased 3.2 percent to 82,715 last month, manufacturers' association Anfac said, also on Monday, down sharply from a 40.5 percent rise in March after a government-backed scrappage scheme ended at the beginning of April.
Italy’s registrations rose 24.7 percent from the same month a year ago to 148,807 vehicles, the transport ministry also said on Monday.
Reuters contributed to this report