Michelin says European tyre market falls 15 pct in March

PARIS, April 16 Tue Apr 16, 2013 5:23am EDT

PARIS, April 16 (Reuters) - Michelin said the market for passenger car and light truck tyres fell 15 percent in Europe last month, while North America saw a 5 percent dip and Brazil a 2 percent rise.

The European market dropped 11 percent overall in the first quarter of 2013, compared with rises of 1 percent in North America and 7 percent in Brazil, Michelin said on its website.

The world's second-largest tyremaker, whose tyres equip vehicles ranging from bicycles to airliners, said in February that it expected sales volumes and operating profit would be flat in 2013.

The company is due to publish sales for the first quarter on Monday. (Reporting by James Regan; editing by James Jukwey)