* Diesel sales plunge 19 pct, 41 pct market share
* Four-month regs up 2.5 pct to 1.14 mln cars
* German drop echoes Italy, France declines, Spain rises
(Adds KBA figures, analyst comment and background)
BERLIN, May 3 New car sales in Germany declined
8 percent in April, with sales of diesel-powered vehicles
dropping 19 percent as politicians debate imposing bans on
diesel cars being driven in certain areas or refitting older
engines with better emission controls to tackle pollution.
Registrations of new cars in Europe's largest auto market
fell to 290,697 vehicles in April because of three fewer selling
days, restricting the rise in sales in the first four months of
the year to 2.5 percent, to 1.14 million cars, the KBA federal
vehicle authority said on Wednesday, confirming an earlier
report by Reuters.
Sales of diesel cars plunged, with their share of the
overall market shrinking to 41 percent, KBA said, noting that
sales of gasoline-powered cars were flat while electric vehicles
posted strong gains from low base levels.
Stuttgart, home to premium carmakers Porsche and
Mercedes-Benz, has been discussing banning diesel
cars from the city centre, while ministers of Germany's regional
governments are calling for older cars to be fitted with better
"The market share of diesel cars will probably decline
further in the coming months and years because the discussion
about diesel vehicles and driving bans won't stop," Peter Fuss,
a senior partner and automotive specialist in Ernst & Young's
German practice, said on Wednesday.
Adjusted for three more selling days, car sales would have
risen 7 percent last month, an industry source told Reuters,
with demand seen from both private and commercial buyers.
Germany's sales drop mirrored declines in France and Italy
whereas Spain reported a small increase.
(Reporting by Andreas Cremer; Editing by Maria Sheahan, Greg