SACRAMENTO – The California New Car Dealers Association (CNCDA) said that registrations of new cars and light trucks declined 42.9 percent in the second quarter of 2009 compared to the year-ago period.

California new vehicle registrations totaled 232,076 units in the second quarter this year; the second quarter in a row that new-vehicle sales totaled less than 250,000 units. The report predicts that total California new-vehicle sales for the year will fall below 1 million units for the first time since 1975.

“Tight credit, continued strains in the housing market, high unemployment and concerns over personal discretionary spending, all helped to pull the market down in the second quarter,” said Gary Shipman, CNCDA Chairman, who also operates Toyota, Subaru and Mazda dealerships in Santa Cruz. “The good news is that I think we have hit bottom, but it could be a slow climb out.”

The California Auto Outlook Second Quarter 2009 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 perspective, comparing California nationally; brand scoreboards; a regional recap and more. The complete report can be accessed on CNCDA’s website at