In this section of the blog, you can find information and opinions about car sales in Europe. Stay up-to-date with which cars are selling the best and what we think future models will do.
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European sales Jan-Sep 2013 Premium large car segment

BMW-5-series-Mercedes-E-Class-Audi-A6--sales-europe-jan-sep-2013The premium large car segment in Europe, shows a similar decline to its smaller sister premium midsize, down 8% in the first three quarters of 2013 compared to the same period last year. But wait, the similarities between the segments don’t end here: there’s 3 Germans on top, first foreigner is a Volvo, and maybe they will have left some crumbs for a few brands who refuse to quit struggling, against better judgment.

BMW 5-series keeps the lead, but barely, with Mercedes-Benz E-Class breathing down its neck. Looks like that € 1 billion Mercedes has spent on the recent facelift is paying off, with an additional 3.449 units sold this year. It has also passed Audi A6 by a large margin, which takes the biggest hit in the segment, losing 17.289 sales compared to last year. A6 is has been introduced in 2011, just like BMW 5-series, so they’re equally “fresh”. Although 5-series (F10) design isn’t exactly heart stopping either, at least it can be held apart from the previous model (E60), the one with the polarizing design. Maybe Audi’s Single Frame Grille has come to the end of its shelf life.… Continue Reading …

European sales Jan-Sep 2013 Limousine segment

mercedes-s-class-sales-europe-jan-sep-2013The luxury limousine segment in Europe is shrinking faster than the market, down 19% in the first three quarters of 2013 compared to the same period last year. Traditional leader Mercedes-Benz S-Class is back on top thanks to the new generation, at the half-year mark it was still in third position. It shouldn’t come as a surprise the German brands take almost 87% of this segment, as Germany is the largest market for these models, and like the premium midsize car segment and premium large car segment, buyers have a preference for their “own” brands, with one surprising exception

The top six enjoy more than half of their European sales in their home market: in Germany, Mercedes-Benz S-Class sells 56% of total European registrations, BMW 7-series: 50%, Audi A8: 53%, Porsche Panamera: 50%, but the limousine with the most homesickness is the VW Phaeton, a huge 86% of Phaetons are registered with a German license plate! That even beats the 65% UK sales of Jaguar XJ, the expected “winner”. As Italian large sedans usually are not so successful outside of Italy, you’d expect Maserati Quattroporte to be up there with the rest of them, but surprisingly, Quattroporte is the least dependent on its home market, only 29% of European sales are in the boot-shaped country.… Continue Reading …

European sales Jan-Sep 2013 Premium midsized and compact SUV segment

The premium midsized SUV segment in Europe remains stable in 2013, also in the models ranking.

BMW-x3-audi-q5-range-rover-evoque-sales-europe-jan-sep-2013BMW X3 shows the biggest decline, but remains the leader of the segment, although Audi Q5 is getting close, followed closely by the highly successful Range Rover Evoque. Volvo XC60 loses some ground, but is still way ahead of Mercedes-Benz GLK. Mercedes clearly have made a misjudgment giving it a square, rugged look compared to the sleek, rounded exteriors of X3 and especially Q5, as GLK is selling at half the volume of its German competitors.

The increased interest in Land Rover Freelander must be a result of steep discounts, as the second generation wasn’t exactly state-of-the-art at its introduction in 2006. The long overdue new generation won’t come until the end of 2014, though. It is heavily dependent on the British market, taking 68% of its European sales in the first three quarters of the year.… Continue Reading …

European sales Jan-Sep 2013 Premium large SUV segment

Mercedes-M-Class-Range-Rover-Sport-Porsche-Cayenne-sales-europe-jan-sep-2013The premium large SUV segment in Europe shows a smaller decline in the first three quarters of 2013 than the non-premium large SUV segment, at minus 14%. However, every model in the top 10 is losing sales compared to last year, except for one.

Mercedes-Benz M-class has kept the crown of the segment, despite the new generation coming in the first half of 2014, so it is safe to say that M-class will still be in the lead by the end of next year. The fight for second position is on, though. With Porsche Cayenne leapfrogging VW Touareg and BMW X5, which show even bigger declines. The new generation Range Rover Sport  is in showrooms now, and it has some positive press reviews in its pocket. It has shed a lot of weight, switching from a body-on-frame to a unibody configuration, and that makes it more efficient, more comfortable and sportier at the same time, giving it a good shot at leaving those 3 Germans behind to take 2nd place in 2014. However, BMW has just introduced its new generation X5 and even though cosmetic changes are relatively small, it won’t give up without a fight.… Continue Reading …

European sales Jan-Sep 2013 Exotic car segment

bentley-continental-gt-ferrari-458-italia-sales-europe-jan-sep-2013Sales of exotic cars in Europe are relatively stable in the first three quarters of 2013, and no changes at the top. Bentley Continental GT and GTC increase their combined lead over Ferrari 458 Italia. It must be because of their engine downsizing, adding an optional V8 to the V12. Some updates in 2014 and the introduction of the 458 Speciale should help the Italian model to take the lead next year. Mind you, sales of McLaren MP4 are not published, but they don’t come close to Ferrari 458 Italia, with 1.400 annual MP4 sales worldwide.

Mercedes SLS AMG has taken a huge hit, down 55% year-on-year, which has given Audi R8, Aston Martin Vantage and newcomer Ferrari F12 the chance to storm ahead.

Aston-Martin-DBSAston Martin is on a roll anyway, with Vanquish relaunched successfully and DBS sales up over 250%. Introduction of Vanquish Volante next year will help sales even further. You’d think Aston Martin is owned by VW Group, since all its models look alike and are hard to distinguish from each other, while still being successful.… Continue Reading …