Volvo, Porsche, Renault's Alpine sports-car unit and Smart were the only marques to show sales gains.
Volvo sales rose 3.6 percent, boosted a strong performance in its home market of Sweden, and by high demand for its Recharge line of plug-in hybrid cars and the XC40 full-electric SUV.
Registrations at Volkswagen Group, the region's top-selling automaker, fell 28 percent with VW brand down 32 percent, Audi down 31 percent, Seat down 27 percent, Skoda down 21 percent and Porsche up 1 percent.
Europe's No. 2 automaker by unit sales, Stellantis Group, formed from the merger of PSA Group and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, saw its registrations drop 27 percent.
Its top-selling brand, Peugeot saw sales decline by 18 percent. Opel, its No. 2 brand by sales, was down 34 percent. Among the group's other brands, Fiat fell 29 percent and Citroen was down 33 percent. Registrations of Jeep's SUVs declined by 14 percent and Alfa Romeo's volume plunged 47 percent.
Renault Group's registrations dropped by 23 percent, with Renault brand down 28 percent and Dacia down 12 percent. Sales of Alpine sports cars rose 19 percent to 77 units.
Among Asian brands Nissan's volume plunged 40 percent, Hyundai fell 32 percent, Toyota was down 19 percent and Kia sales fell 10 percent.
Ford's registrations declined by 26 percent.
Sales of BMW brand's premium cars were down 16 percent while Mercedes-Benz registrations fell 21 percent. Sales of Smart cars were up 191 percent to 2,590 from 889 last January.