Government incentives helped new-car sales in western Europe rise 9.3 percent in April.
Sales year-on-year rose 52.4 percent in Italy, where car scrapping incentives are in force. The United Kingdom was up 12.4 percent.
Germany managed a 2.2 percent gain from last year. Germany is Europe's biggest market.
France was down 10.3 percent in April, an improvement on the first quarter decline of 26.6 percent.
Scrappage incentives introduced April 11 boosted the Spanish market. Sales rose 19.7 percent during April. More than 10,000 of the 89,334 registrations used the incentive. Spanish sales through April are up 9.7 percent to 329,000 units.
Volkswagen's Seat subsidiary is based in Spain, and the incentive there helped Seat to a 13.9 percent increase in Europe in April. Seat's sibling down-market brand, Czech-based Skoda, gained 32.2 percent to lead the Volkswagen Group in percentage gain for the month.
Italy is boiling over. Fiat Group gained 23.0 percent for the month. In Italy, the Fiat brand gained 66.0 percent. Most of the gains are with lower-margin cars: the Fiat Cinquecento, Panda and Punto.
Other entry-level brands did well in Italy. Hyundai was up 176 percent; Skoda was up 168 percent.
General Motors, Ford and PSA/Peugeot-Citroen all had plus months in April, although they are behind the market and remain behind in year-to-date sales.