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AKIPRESS.COM - Registrations of new cars in France rebounded in March compared with the same month last year, boosted by strong sales performances by French auto makers that were lifted by demand for new, popular models, MarketWatch reported referring to the French automobile manufacturers' association.
The latest figures for the French market show an 8.9% increase in March from a year before, more than offsetting February's 1.4% decline, and making an increase of 2.9% so far this year compared with the first quarter of 2013.
France's largest automotive group, PSA Peugeot Citroen, recorded a 15% jump in its registrations in March, fueled by sales of its Peugeot 2008 urban crossover and its new 308 compact hatchback.
Peugeot's local rival Renault SA saw a 21% surge in its French registrations in March, pulled up by a 53% increase at its Dacia subsidiary that is seeing robust demand for its no-frills Duster SUV look-alike, among other budget models.
French consumers clearly favored local brands, as sales of imported vehicles were flat in March, year-on-year. Korean manufacturer Hyundai saw a 36% drop in March, while premium brand Mercedes-Benz suffered a 7% decline.