Germany’s car import association, the VDIK, has estimated that Germany’s car market declined by at least 10% in the month of October.

That would suggest that the cumulative German car market for the first ten months is flat or, at best, marginally up on the same period last year.

Official market data should be released by the VDA later this week.

In the month of September, Germany’s car market was down by just 1.5% on year-ago levels, but market analysts have warned that consumer confidence in Germany has appeared particularly weak in recent months, suggesting that worse may be to come.

Earlier this year, Germany’s car market was seen as offering relatively strong prospects after a particularly weak 2007 due to a VAT change and uncertainty surrounding an upcoming CO2 tax (still not fully resolved).

According to JD Power, the German market, which in the earlier months of 2008 appeared to be on an increasing trend from a low base, has now started to ‘sag under the weight of an increasingly concerned consumer’. The economic vigour from the early months has also now vanished, giving rise to a far flatter outlook, JD Power said.

Recent turmoil in international financial markets, which have had a considerable impact on Germany, have added considerable downside risks to the outlook for the German economy.