Romanian Car Market To Drop Up To 10% In 2011 - Dealers

The Romanian car market will drop up to 10% this year compared to 2010, mainly due to lack of financing, according to car dealers.

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Romanian Car Market To Drop Up To 10% In 2011 - Dealers

In 2010, car sales in Romania fell over 18% to 106,000 units, according to data released by the Automotive Manufacturers and Importers Association, or APIA. On the other hand, data from the Car Registration Department revealed that even fewer cars were registered on the local market last year.

Early this year, APIA representatives estimated the local car market would climb 5% to 10% compared to 2010, while dealers' worst-case scenario was a stagnating market.

About 49,000 cars were registered in Romania in the first eight months of the year, down about 12% compared to January-August 2010.

Local car sales will fall 10% in 2011 compared to last year, said Gabriela Pacea, sales representative of Mitsubishi dealer M Car Distribution.

Ford dealer Neste general director Cristian Bica said the fact that this year's edition of the car scrappage program started later and will end in November might also be held accountable for the decline of the local car market. He estimated car sales will drop 5% in 2011.

Bogdan Pasa, marketing and communications director of Kia Romauto, said the Romanian car market wouldn't have existed without the car scrappage program. Even so, car sales will drop compared to last year, mainly due to lack of financing, he added.

Honda Trading sales representative Florin Nita expects the car market will shrink 10% this year due to the VAT hike in 2010.

The Romanian car market, also including commercial vehicles and buses, fell 8% in the first eight months of the year to about 70,000 units.

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