Italy 2006 car registrations seen higher

MILAN -- Italian new car registrations will likely reach some 2.33 million units in 2006, more than 4 percent higher than the number last year, according to Centro Studi Promotor (CSP), a center that monitors the sector.

It predicted Fiat, the country's sole automaker, would have a share of about 31 percent of the market, compared with 27.98 percent in 2005.

"The car market had a positive first half," Gian Primo Quagliano, the center's director, told a news conference today. "Then there was a slowdown during the summer, but in October it recovered to the same level as October 2005."

Quagliano also said new car registrations for November were expected to be line with those of the same period last year. The transport ministry had reported at the time that registrations had totalled 177,489 units, up 3.06 percent.

The publication of the monthly numbers have acted as a barometer for Fiat's recovery from crisis this decade.

So far this year, it has managed either to meet or top its 2006 market share target of 30 percent in Italy.

Tags: Sales Italy Fiat

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