New-car sales in Russia fell 11 percent in September, although Lada, Renault, Volkswagen and Toyota bucked the downward trend by boosting their sales.
Sales fell to 125,568 last month, the Association of European Businesses (AEB) lobby group said on Monday.
The outlook for the next few months will now depend on whether customers believe that the state-sponsored incentives, introduced to spur sales in the sluggish economy, will run out soon or not, said Joerg Schreiber, chairman of the AEB Automobile Manufacturers Committee.
"Those who see a deadline looming may want to accelerate their purchase decision. And if this is the thinking of the majority, new-car demand will go up in the short term," Schreiber said.
In July, the AEB downgraded its 2016 full-year market forecast to 1.44 million units from a previously expected 1.53 million units, representing a 10 percent fall compared with 2015.
Through September, sales fell 14 percent to 1.02 million vehicles, the AEB said.
Mixed results for foreign brands
Lada, Russia's top-selling brand, continued to benefit from demand for the Vesta sedan and XRay crossover, two compact cars developed by Lada to rival models from Western automakers. Lada sales were up 5 percent last month.
Volume at second-placed Hyundai dropped by 6 percent, while at Kia, the No. 3 brand, sales were down 17 percent. Renault, the No. 4 brand, saw registrations rise 1 percent, while fifth-ranked Toyota's sales jumped 18 percent.
• Download PDF, above right, for Russia sales by automaker, brand and model for September and nine months.
Among other top-ranked brands in the market, VW sales rose by 3 percent while Skoda was up 5 percent. Sales at Ford fell 27 percent and Chevrolet was down 56 percent.