Renault 1st quarter sales slide on weak Europe

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PARIS (AP) — Renault says that sales of its cars slumped 12.6 percent in the first quarter as Europe's sliding economies hit automakers across the continent.

The French car maker says it made 7.74 billion euros ($10.1 billion) in sales from its auto making operations in the January-March period, down from 8.85 billion euros a year earlier.

Renault's first quarter performance was even weaker than French rival PSA Peugeot Citroen, which posted a 10.3 percent drop in car sales in the quarter.

In Europe, where the auto market is contracting for a sixth consecutive year, Renault fared slightly better than its French rival, with deliveries down 11.6 percent in Europe compared with 16.9 percent for Peugeot Citroen.

Including its financing arm, Renault group sales were down 11.8 percent at 8.27 billion euros.

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