(MENAFN - AFP) New car registrations in Germany, a key measure of demand in one of the most crucial sectors of Europe's top economy, were up slightly last month even as the crisis weighed on sentiment, official data showed Friday.
Some 259,600 new cars were registered in October, an increase of 1.0 percent over the same month a year earlier, the VDA auto industry calculated.
That brought total sales in the first 10 months to 2.618 million vehicles, a drop of two percent year-on-year.
"As much as we are pleased to see the slight increase in October, we must not overestimate it," said VDA president Matthias Wissmann.
"Private customers in particular remain unsettled by Europe's ongoing debt crisis," Wissmann said.
"Even if consumer sentiment as a whole is at high levels, the purchase of a new car is one of the most important decisions consumers will make. It's expectations that play a role here. We continue to sense some reticence on the domestic market," he said.
Export sales of German-made cars declined meanwhile, falling by 7.0 percent to 336,900 units in October alone and by 2.0 percent to 3.477 million in the first 10 months.
In terms of output, the number of cars rolling off the production line fell by 6.0 percent to 446,100 in October and by 3.0 percent to 4.557 million in the period from January to October.