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California New-Vehicle Registrations Decline 18.6% in First Quarter

April 29, 2008

SACRAMENTO –- The California New Car Dealers Association (CNCDA) announced that registrations of new cars and light trucks barely exceeded 400,000 units during the first quarter of this year, a decline of 18.6 percent from the same period a year earlier, according to the California Auto Outlook First Quarter 2008 Market Report.

The combination of record high levels of consumer debt, the real estate bubble headed towards bursting, and fuel prices on a steep rise have taken a predictable toll on new vehicle sales.

“The shift from SUVs, pickups and vans towards passenger cars shows that consumers are making their purchase decisions with a cost-conscious and environmentally-aware frame of mind,” said Denny FitzPatrick, CNCDA Chairman. “For those consumers who still need a larger vehicle, there are numerous manufacturer incentives being offered that ease the burden of a new-vehicle purchase, as well as a wide range of fleet options that balance the need for size and fuel economy.”

The California Auto Outlook First Quarter 2008 Market Report provides comprehensive information on the state’s new-vehicle market with charts and graphs. The report includes: a segment watch, including the top 10 models in each segment; a market tracker, showing gains or losses by brand and the brands benefiting from those trends; a market perspective, comparing California nationally; brand scoreboards; a regional recap and more.

The complete report can be accessed on CNCDA’s website at www.cncda.org.

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