German new-car sales increased 90 percent in April compared with the same month in 2020 when the market was under pressure from lockdowns to curb the COVID-19 pandemic.
Registrations were 229,650, according to data released by the KBA motor vehicle authority.
Importers association the VDIK said the market's recovery from the pandemic is very slow.
April registrations were 16 percent below the long-term average for the month and four-month sales were also 16 percent below the long-term average, the association said.
Private new registrations have been very weak since the beginning of the year, the VDIK said. In the first four months, they were 1 percent below the very poor level of the previous year. On a long-term average, they are down 25 percent, the association said.
Registrations to business fleets rose 155 percent in April while sales to private customers increased by 56 percent, according to KBA figures.
"The recovery of the passenger car market continues to be a long time coming," VDIK President Reinhard Zirpel said in a statement. "However, given the constraints of the coronavirus crisis and semiconductor issues, the current figures do not reflect the true potential of the market," he said.
The VDA industry association cut its production forecast for the year, blaming supply chain bottlenecks and a disappointing recovery over the first quarter for the move.
The association said it expected output at German auto factories to rise 13 percent to 4 million units, compared to an earlier forecast of a 20 percent increase to 4.2 million units.