Archives for September 2016

I’m going to India, what do you want to know about it?

I will be travelling to Mumbai India tomorrow for an innovation workshop with Mahindra, one of the biggest Indian automakers and #3 best selling brand in India. It is also the owner of SsangYong and Pininfarina. After the workshop, I’ll be spending some personal time in India, and I’m wondering if there’s anything you, my readers, would like to know about India’s car market or automotive culture


Photo credit: Cory Doctorow, Wikimedia Commons

Of course I’ll be taking a lot of pictures of the street scenes, as I’ve done before in my ongoing car cultures series. Do you want me to test drive some local cars, and which ones? Or do something crazy like road tripping in a local Indian car? Or do you want me to try and get an interview with someone from the local automotive industry? Or perhaps some of my readers from India can give me some advice of interesting places to see or cool things to do, automotive related of course.

Let me know what you think, and I’ll try my best to satisfy your needs. I’ll be back in two weeks time. Until then, Kriss will try to keep the site up-to-date with some of his articles.

European car sales analysis July 2016 – models

Opel_Astra-2016-auto-sales-statistics-EuropeAfter discussing the July 2016 European car brand sales ranking, we’ll zoom in at which models were popular in July. One of the most significant developments in the models ranking is the 10.000 unit loss of the Volkswagen Golf, which means sales of the traditional leader are down by more than a fifth of the same month last year. And we won’t have to go far down the ranking to find one of the culprits of this demise: the Opel/Vauxhall Astra scores its highest ranking since 2007 with a fourth place and a more than 26% increase over the previous generation last year. That puts the Renault Clio, impressively #2 in June, back down into 5th place. Despite the huge loss for the Golf, its top ranking is in no way under threat, as it still sells 50% more than its closest competitor: its little sibling VW Polo. The Nissan Qashqai is the best selling crossover again after the Renault Captur snuck ahead in June, but the new Volkswagen Tiguan is closing in at #16, with sales stable on the very impressive end-of-life sales of the previous generation. The Volkswagen Passat is back into the top-10 despite sales still down more than 22%, while the Skoda Octavia is out of the top-10.… Continue Reading …

European car sales analysis July 2016 – brands

European-car-sales-graph-July_2016After 33 months of non-stop growth, the European car market’s recovery has come to an end in July 2016, with sales down 2,6% for the month, at 1.147.258 units. After showing impressive growth in the first half of the year, even the Southern European countries see their recovery stall, with increases of just 3% in Italy and 4% in Spain. Surprisingly, UK sales are stable at +0,1% while the German car market contracts 4% and France is down even harder at -10%. Year-to-date, we’re still in positive figures at +7,3% to 9.174.057 sales, although we may finish the year in the red if this trend continues as expected, spurred by the Brexit vote.

Volkswagen_Touran-auto-sales-statistics-EuropeIf Volkswagen Group was the biggest gaining manufacturer as recently as two months ago in April, its fortunes have changed suddenly, as it is the biggest losing manufacturer in July, down almost 27.500 units of volume on the same month last year. That means VW Group accounts for 89% of the entire market’s lost volume this month. But wait, there’s another big loser in the continent, as PSA lost over 16.000 sales as well, while 13 other manufacturers lose less than 2.000 units and just 8 gain volume this month. The biggest volume gainer is Tata Motors at +4.190 units thanks to gains of both Jaguar and Land Rover, followed by Hyundai-Kia and FCA. Relatively, Tata Motors is the fastest growing manufacturer as well, with a gain of almost 33%, followed by SAIC MG and Suzuki, while Aston Martin, Tesla and Lotus all lose more than 37% on last year.… Continue Reading …

US sales: August 2016, models

Honda CR-V

After discussing the US auto brand sales ranking for August, let’s zoom in on the models.… Continue Reading …

Peugeot turns 5008 minivan into 7-seat soft-roader

Hot on the heals of the Škoda Kodiaq reveal, Peugeot revealed its own competitor for the wallet of those looking for a rugged, seven-seat family runabout: the new 5008.

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Snap poll: which of the VAG soft-roaders do you prefer?




Over the course of the last year, VAG has finally shown off the flexibility of its MQB platform by releasing not one, not two, not even three, but four distinct crossovers based on the ubiquitous component set. Ranging from 4.2m (Audi Q2) to 4.7m (Škoda Kodiaq) in length, and varying in styling, market positioning and global appeal, they will nonetheless often find themselves fighting over the wallets of similar customers, at least in Europe. So now the question to our readers: which do you prefer?

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Škoda releases long-awaited Kodiaq [w/ poll]

After what seems like years of speculation, spyshots, teasers and leaks, Škoda finally released its take on the 7-seat family crossover: the Kodiaq. But for once all the buildup may actually be justified, as the Kodiaq is not just another Škoda model – it is the harbinger of a bevy of new crossovers from the Czech carmaker, and has the potential to become one of its best-sellers. That, and it’s probably the ultimate answer to the question “why should Škoda enter the US market?”.… Continue Reading …

US sales: August 2016, brands

US car sales were 1,511,100 in August, a bit lower than in July and a whole 3.5 percent lower than in August 2015. This poor showing came on the back of the main market players underperforming, especially Ford and Nissan, and resulted in a SAAR figure of 16.97 million, considerably lower than in July. With the market seemingly performing well some months and then plunging the others, it may be just a matter of time before it runs out of steam fully. For now, though, the industry is still on course for a record year in 2016.
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Look-a-like: New Kia Rio and… [w/ poll]

Just yesterday Kia released pictures of the new Rio, and it looks reassuringly familiar – those solid flanks, the handsome front, the slightly aggressive lights. However, unlike with so many new cars these days, this is not because the new Kia Rio looks much like the old one (think most VAG, BMW products). In fact, the new Rio looks surprisingly unlike its dynamic and uniquely-styled predecessor. Rather, it is reminiscent of another car…… Continue Reading …