Sanctions hit Russia’s car market as sales fall more than 60 per cent

New car sales Russia - CC Srđan Popović

Sanctions have hit Russia’s new car sales despite claims from the government that they have largely been unaffected.

According to the Association of European Businesses (AEB) on Tuesday, December 6, the sales of passenger and light commercial vehicles fell again in November with just 46,403 sold.

The latest figures show that sales were down 61.6 per cent and for the year to date 60.9 per cent.

Brands experiencing the largest drop in sales are as expected mainly European and Japanese with some recording no sales at all. Sanctions by these countries have largely killed the market for their vehicles in Russia, although recent reports show a growing black market in nearly new or pre-registered vehicles.

These are being imported in growing volumes from countries whose restrictions do not limit the sale of such products to Russia following its invasion of Ukraine.

Earlier reports had suggested that the police and other emergency services in Russia were struggling to acquire new models and were having to make vehicles last longer or buy on the black market. 

Brands that experienced the largest fall in sales are:

Lexus (–100%)

Volkswagen (–99%)

Toyota (–99%)

Volvo (–98%)

Porsche (–98%)

This year 548,877 vehicles have been sold, down from the previous year’s 1,823,512 for the same period.

With car sales having fallen more than 60 per cent that assumption is that sanctions are having an effect, but that also the void being left by western producers is not yet being filled by brands from countries who have not adopted the same sanctions packages, most notably India and China.


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Written by

Peter McLaren-Kennedy

Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]

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