Spanish new car registrations fell by 49.9% year-on-year to 72,377 units in December according to local trade industry association ANFAC.
The result compounded a dreadful last quarter to the year and left the market down 28.1% for 2008 as a whole on 1,161,176 units.
Analysts at IHS Global Insight noted that December also had two extra working days in the month, typically worth 4.5% per day, underlining the precipitous nature of the slump being endured in Spain.
Global Insight said that Spanish car sales are now at their lowest level since 1997, and December’s fall is the sharpest experienced since January 1993 following falls of 40% in October and 49.6% fall in November.
Domestic carmaker Seat saw sales fall 27.1% to 102,125 units.
Opel suffered the largest decline out of the big sellers in the country, with yearly sales off 39.1% to 74,502 units, down from 122,261 in 2007. Citroën lost its best selling brand spot to Ford, which reported a sales fall of 23.9% to 106,403 units.

Spain’s economy has suffered a hammer blow this year from the collapsed property bubble.