German new-car sales increased 36 percent in March compared with the same month in 2020.
Registrations totaled 292,349, according to data released on Tuesday the KBA motor vehicle authority.
The sales result was inflated because dealerships were closed in March 2020 during the country's first lockdown to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
"In reality, we have been dealing with an extremely weak passenger car market since the beginning of the year," Reinhard Zirpel, president of the VDIK importers association, said in a statement.
"The industry could not have imagined that the first quarter of 2021 would be even gloomier than the already extremely poor prior-year period. In many regions, car dealers are having to operate without appointment shopping. This is making the situation increasingly difficult," Zirpel added.
Alfa Romeo had the biggest gain in March, up 115 percent; followed by Peugeot, up 78 percent; Hyundai, up 76 percent; Opel, up 75 percent; and Tesla, up 64 percent.
- Click here for German sales in March by brand.
Among the losers were Honda and Mitsubishi, whose registrations each fell 33 percent; DS, down 19 percent; and Jaguar, down 10 percent.
Sales of full-electric cars rose 191 percent to 30,101 for a 10.3 percent market share. Plug-in hybrid registrations rose 278 percent to 35,580 for a 12.2 percent share.
Sales of gasoline cars rose 7 percent to 115,174 for a 39.4 percent share. Diesel registrations fell 5 percent to 64,518 for a 22.1 percent share.
Total German market registrations for the first quarter are down 6 percent to 656,452.