Essen, Germany – A new forecast by R. L. Polk & Co. reports that Russia will become the largest automotive sales market for new cars in Europe by 2010. In 2007, new-car registrations reached 2.35 million, the first time the country exceeded the two-million mark, and put Russia fourth in Europe behind Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom.Approximately one million new cars were sold each year in Russia through 2002, and during the last five years, demand has grown by approximately 140 per cent. Future growth is estimated to be approximately 60 per cent, which will result in approximately 3.7 million new registrations by 2010 – a number which exceeds every other European country today.

Lada’s dominance as the leading domestic automaker has been declining, from 70 per cent in 2002 to 27 per cent in 2007. It is estimated that by 2010, more than 80 per cent of all new registrations will come from manufacturers other than Lada.

“A number of manufacturers are now selling more new cars in Russia than in any other European country,” said Ulrich Winzen, chief analyst, forecasting and consulting for Polk Germany. “For Toyota, Nissan, Mitsubishi, Hyundai, Kia and Chevrolet, Russia represents the strongest European market in terms of sales.”

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