Archives for November 2014

European sales 2014 January – September Small SUV segment

The small crossover segment has already topped half a million sales after three quarters of the year and has already broken the full year 2013 tally by a large margin. By the end of the year, a total of 670.000 small crossovers may have hit European streets, of which the top-5 players take a combined share of 92%.

European-car-sales-statistics-small-crossover-segment-2014-Renault_Captur-Peugeot_2008-Dacia_Duster-Opel_MokkaThanks to the popularity of the segment in their home market France, the Renault Captur, Peugeot 2008 and Dacia Duster take the podium positions of the segment. Or is it the other way around? Are small crossover sales in France ahead of the rest of the continent because their incumbent brands have introduced the hottest new models last year? Either way, the Captur remains the leader of the pack and the only model above 20% segment share, but behind it is a tight three-way race. Year-to-date, the 2008 is well ahead of the Duster and the Opel/Vauxhall Mokka, but when looking at the third quarter, less than 125 sales separate the three models.

The Duster almost outsold the Captur in July and actually did so in the slow month of August, but it fell back in September. Sales of the Mokka have headed in the opposite direction, losing ground in July and August, but making it all up in September at it came within 400 units of the Captur.… Continue Reading …

European sales 2014 January – September Large MPV segment

Sales of large MPVs in Europe are up a modest 6% after the first 9 months of the year, which could make 2014 the first year since 2007 that the segment has grown year-on-year. After contracting 17% last year, with only 2 out of the 9 models in the segment increasing their sales, the trend seems to have reversed, with 6 out of 9 models gaining ground.

European-car-sales-statistics-large-MPV-segment-2014-Volkswagen_Sharan-Seat_AlhambraThis means the growth of the segment isn’t due exclusively to the sell-out pricing of the Ford S-Max and Galaxy, which are to be replaced next year. The VW-group twins Volkswagen Sharan and Seat Alhambra are the two models that add the most sales, maybe a bit less surprising if you consider they are still the freshest models of the major players in the segment, at four years old.

The Lancia Voyager has been around since 2008, first under the Chrysler brand and since 2011 named Lancia, the Fords were introduced in 2006, the current generation Espace dates back as far as 2003, and the second generation PSA twins started their lifecycle as quadruplets with the Fiat Ulysse and Lancia Phedra in 2002, which have already been discontinued in 2010.… Continue Reading …

European sales 2014 January – September Midsized MPV segment

Sales of midsized MPVs in Europe are down less than 6.000 units, or 1% on the first three quarters of last year. Only three models increase their sales more than 2%, including one all-new model, while the rest either loses ground or stays virtually stable.

European-car-sales-statistics-midsized-MPV-segment-2014-Citroen_C4_Picasso-Renault_ScenicThe Citroën C4 (Grand) Picasso continues its strong performance, now grabbing 15,6% of the segment and extending its lead over the traditional leader Renault (Grand) Scenic. If the Picasso holds on to its lead until the end of the year, it would be only the second time ever that the Scenic doesn’t lead the segment it invented in 1996. In 2008 it was also Citroën who kicked the Scenic down. However, the French may have a battle on their own turf next year, as the recently introduced Volkswagen Golf Sportsvan was the best selling midsized MPV in September. Despite having half as many selling days as the rest of the segment, the Sportsvan has already moved in to 7th place of the segment and doesn’t seem to take any prisoners.… Continue Reading …

European sales 2014 January – September Small MPV segment

European-car-sales-statistics-small-mpv-segment-2014-Fiat_500L-Nissan_Note-Opel_MerivaThe small MPV segment in Europe is still up 6% after the first nine months of 2014, but continued competition from small crossovers has caused the growth to stall, while the top-3 are the only models to increase sales year-over-year. The Fiat 500L continues to control the segment which it has lead for five straight quarters, but the Nissan Note is storming up the charts, coming from 7th place last year with the previous generation to second place this year, thanks to the new model. The Note even outsold the 500L in September thanks to strong volume in the UK, its home market.

The Ford B-Max loses another spot in the segment it has lead until the first half of 2013, and it has been surpassed since by respectively the 500L, the Note and now the Opel/Vauxhall Meriva to be kicked off the podium. The little Ford has lost 20% of its volume, or almost 11.000 units on last year and could feel the Citroën C3 Picasso breathing down its neck in September.… Continue Reading …

European sales 2014 January – September Midsize segment

European-car-sales-statistics-midsize-segment-2014-Volkswagen_Passat-Ford_MondeoThe midsized segment has been in crisis for a decade now, but the sales decline seems to bottom out, with sales down “only” 5% after the first three quarters of 2014, to just over 400.000 units. With the new generations VW Passat and Ford Mondeo ready to start their customer deliveries, and the Peugeot 508 recently facelifted, the segment should be able to return to positive territory for only the second time since 2001. The VW Passat remains stable and increases its share of the segment to 28,8%, and that’s even without the new generation, which has only just entered European showrooms and should start customer deliveries anytime now.

The top-4 are the only models in the segment to increase their sales and now control almost two thirds of the segment, indicating a further defragmentation of the market. The Honda Accord is the latest victim of this increased monotony in the midsized car segment, as it won’t be replaced at the end of its life cycle, joining the Suzuki Kizashi, Seat Exeo, Chevrolet Malibu on their way to the happy hunting grounds.… Continue Reading …

European sales 2014 January – September Compact segment

After nine months, the European compact car segment is still up 10%, outperforming the market and, with over 1,7 million units sold, still the second largest segment of the continent.

European-car-sales-statistics-compact-segment-2014-Volkswagen_Golf-Skoda_Octavia-Seat_LeonAs expected, the VW Golf continues to lead over its rivals by a large margin, and even increasing its share of the segment to 23%, which means almost one in every four compact cars sold in Europe is a Golf. The Ford Focus had an excellent month of September thanks to the strong UK market, but it was outsold by the Skoda Octavia in both July and August. With Octavia sales up one third and Focus sales stable year-to-date, the Focus desperately needs the upcoming facelift to fend off its Czech rival next year.

The Opel/Vauxhall Astra is still waiting for its replacement and is in danger of losing its fourth place to the Peugeot 308 next year, as the latter is coming closer and closer. However, the 308 can’t afford not to look in its mirrors, as the Seat Leon is charging ahead as well, now having passed the ageing Renault Megane for sixth place. The Megane was also outsold by the Toyota Auris in August and September and may lose another spot by the end of the year. That should give some consolation to the best selling Asian compact, which has been kicked down from 6th to 8th this year.

The Hyundai i30 and Kia Cee’d lose more than 10.000 units of their volume each, although their replacements won’t be due until at least 2016.… Continue Reading …

European sales 2014 January – September Subcompact segment

Sales of subcompact cars in Europe remain stable at a 1% growth year-on-year after the first nine months of 2014. It remains the largest segment of the continent at almost 2 million units sold.


Photo credit: AutoZeitung

The traditional leader Ford Fiesta has taken some distance from the Renault Clio in second place, mainly thanks to an excellent month of September, in which the small Ford outsold all of its rivals by a margin of at least 10.000 units, similar to last March. These months are the peak months in the UK market, where the Fiesta is particularly strong. In August, the Fiesta was outsold by both the VW Polo and the Clio. The Polo has just been facelifted and has outsold the Renault Clio in both August and September. I think the advantage of the Clio is large enough to hold onto its position until the end of the year, but it better prepare for a battle in 2015.

The Peugeot 208 continues to struggle, down 10% on last year. A Peugeot spokesperson at the Paris Auto Show last month explained to me that the brand prefers profit over volume and therefore chooses not to dump the model to rental companies at very low margins. Also, the 208 is set to get a facelift next year to keep it fresh.

A recent facelift of the Toyota Yaris, with the new X-shaped front-end that’s the brand’s new family face is likely to keep the small Toyota in the plus this year.… Continue Reading …

European sales 2014 January – September Minicar segment


After the first nine months of 2014, the minicar segment is still in negative territory, although just. Sales are down 1% or less than 5.000 units on last year, which means sales have improved in the third quarter, thanks to a strong performance for the segment leader Fiat 500 and the new generation Kolin triplets.

European-car-sales-statistics-minicar-segment-2014-Fiat_500-Volkswagen_up-Fiat_PandaThe Fiat 500 goes from strength to strength and seems to be unstoppable. In September, European sales of the already six-year-old model were above the 20.000 cars per month mark for only the second time ever, after last March. The 500 hasn’t just confirmed its leadership of the segment, which it took from the Panda exactly one year ago, it even added more sales than any other model in the segment, increasing its share of the segment to 15%. By itself, the 500 sold almost as many cars as the Volkswagen Up!, Skoda Citigo and Seat Mii combined.

The Panda holds on to the second spot, followed by the VW Up! which has remained stable on last year. The fastest growing model in the top 15 of the segment is the Hyundai i10, which has been renewed at the end of last year. Sales of the new generation are up one third compared to its predecessor in the first nine months of 2013. If the i10 manages to hold on to its fourth place of the segment by the end of the year, it would be an all-time best for the model.… Continue Reading …

European sales 2014 January – September Passenger Van segment


Sales of passenger vans have increased in the third quarter of 2014, for both segments. The large passenger van segment is now up 5% on 2013, while the compact passenger van segment has returned into positive territory, improving 2% on last year.

Fiat-Ducato-passenger-van-sales-EuropeThe large passenger van segment is benefiting from a flood of new generations and model updates, but despite being one of the oldest models in the segment, the Volkswagen Transporter/Multivan T5 still manages to improve its sales, albeit slightly. It still holds over 33% share of the segment, more than 10% over its nearest competitor, the Fiat Ducato. I expect the Ducato to improve even further next year, as the model has just been updated.… Continue Reading …

European car sales analysis September 2014 – models


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September was a very strong month of sales in the UK, as you can read in the European car sales brand ranking for September 2014 and as a result, models that do well in the UK market are expected to over-perform in the ranking this month. For example, the Opel/Vauxhall Corsa and Astra both move up one spot in the September ranking when compared to their year-to-date level. And in August, the Renault Clio came within 500 units of the Ford Fiesta, but in September, the Fiesta had a lead of more than 10.000 sales over the Clio, similar to last March, the other big month of UK sales.

The Volkswagen Polo is the biggest gainer in the top 10, thanks to its (minor) facelift. This makes two Volkswagens on the podium, as the Golf has held on to its traditional top spot, followed by four subcompacts, the Ford Focus and the Peugeot 208. Last month, the Audi A3 also benefited from strong UK volume, as did the Fiat 500 in 9th position.

Mercedes-Benz-C-Class-auto-sales-statistics-EuropeExcellent performance of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, outselling its main rival BMW 3-series for the first time since November 2012, thanks to its new generation and also helped by BMW’s decision to rename the coupe and convertible versions as the 4-series. It’s unlikely the C-Class will overtake the 3-series for the full year, but considering it’s less than 200 units behind the aging Audi A4 year-to-date, the Merc will have moved into second place in the first week of October.

The Opel/Vauxhall Mokka has enjoyed a strong month of September as well, closing in on the Renault Captur with less than 400 sales between them, and leaving the Peugeot 2008 and especially the Dacia Duster behind.… Continue Reading …