European sales 2016 compact car segment

Compact_car-segment-European-sales-2016-Volkswagen_Golf-Opel_Astra-Skoda_OctaviaThe compact car segment in Europe has grown by 3% in 2016, half the growth of the overall market at +6,2% and equal to the subcompact car segment, which remains Europe’s largest segment ahead of this one. Expectedly, the dominant leader of the segment Volkswagen Golf drops back below half a million sales after two years, due to increasing pressure of fresh rivals. The main culprit to the Golf’s demise is the Opel/Vauxhall Astra, movin up from fifth place to #2 for the first time since 2011 thanks to a 30% sales increase on last year, topping a quarter million sales also for the first time since 2011. The bang-for-your-bucks Skoda Octavia holds on to its third place with sales up 5%, helped by the 9% loss for the Ford Focus, dropping from 2nd place to #4. The Peugeot 308 loses a similar share of 9% and drops a place to #5 after topping 200.000 sales for only one year.

Note: clicking on the model name opens the sales data page for that model; clicking year in the legend turns the display for that year on/off

Renault_Megane-2016-auto-sales-statistics-EuropeThanks to the full availability of the station wagon version of its new generation in the last quarter, the Renault Megane recovers from a 20% loss in Q1 to a 20% increase for the full year, jumping two places to #6, but more impressive is its 4th place in Q4, outselling both the Focus and the 308, a sign that it may challenge the Octavia for a podium position in 2017. However, the Octavia will be facelifted this year, giving it double headlights very similar to the previous generation Mercedes-Benz E-Class. Holding on to 6th place is the Octavia’s sibling Seat Leon, followed by the Toyota Auris with almost stable sales.

Fiat_Tipo-hatchback-station_wagonThe Hyundai i30 will be renewed in 2017 and loses 14% to stay only just ahead of its sibling Kia Cee’d. The Skoda Rapid also has virtually stable sales and still doesn’t manage to enter the top-10. In fact, it’s threatened by the all-new Fiat Tipo, which was the #9 of the segment in Q4 boosted by the introduction of the hatchback and station wagon versions. The Citroën C4 and Mazda3 both slightly lose volume and barely manage to stay ahead of the Honda Civic, up 4%. In contrast, the Nissan Pulsar loses over a quarter of its volume to less than half of its projected sales, which I’ve always found overly ambitious to begin with. The Nissan Leaf continues to improve with sales up to a record 18.210, keeping it ahead of the renewed Toyota Prius which more than doubles the volume of its predecessor last year.

Compact-car-sales-Europe-2016-toyota_prius-hyundai_ioniqAt the tail end of the top-20, we find the Citroën C-Elysee, also more than doubling up now that the brand has decided to make it available in more countries, most notably France and Germany, even though most of its sales in those countries will be fleet sales like to taxi companies. Still, the C-Elysee becomes the best selling sedan-only model of the segment ahead of the Toyota Corolla, Seat Toledo and Volkswagen Jetta. The Hyundai Ioniq has been launched as a hybrid first, before the EV and plug-in hybrid versions arrive in 2017, but it already outsold its rival Prius in Q4. This promises to be a tough fight in 2017!

In 2017 the Golf, Leon and Octavia will be facelifted early 2017, followed by the 308. As mentioned, the i30 will be replaced this year, which means its sibling Cee’d will soon follow suit, and their rival Auris will also be renewed on Toyota’s new platform. More product news from Asia: Honda has already revealed the new generation Civic hatchback, and Nissan is expected to facelift the Pulsar. Volkswagen will renew the Jetta sedan, and the e-Golf will get more range. Finally, the next generation Focus will be revealed at the end of this year, but it isn’t likely to hit showrooms before 2018.

Also check out the US compact car segment, where the Honda Civic reclaimed the lead from the Toyota Corolla for the first time since 2013 and the Nissan Sentra climbs to 3rd place.

  Compact segment 2016 2015 Change
1 Volkswagen Golf 491.681 534.535 -8%
2 Opel/Vauxhall Astra 250.410 192.973 30%
3 Skoda Octavia 226.737 215.797 5%
4 Ford Focus 212.083 232.160 -9%
5 Peugeot 308 194.650 213.764 -9%
6 Renault Megane 148.213 123.114 20%
7 Seat Leon 143.938 141.777 2%
8 Toyota Auris 128.906 129.648 -1%
9 Hyundai i30 77.011 89.957 -14%
10 Kia Cee’d 76.530 73.412 4%
11 Skoda Rapid 67.423 67.974 -1%
12 Fiat Tipo 60.286 772 7709%
13 Citroën C4 46.939 50.202 -6%
14 Mazda3 45.889 49.766 -8%
15 Honda Civic 45.299 43.652 4%
16 Nissan Pulsar 31.699 43.267 -27%
17 Volkswagen Beetle 25.127 25.562 -2%
18 Nissan Leaf 18.210 15.303 19%
19 Toyota Prius 16.348 7.638 114%
20 Citroën C-Elysee 14.138 6.727 110%
21 Toyota Corolla 14.030 12.713 10%
22 Volkswagen Scirocco 10.752 12.035 -11%
23 Seat Toledo 9.071 10.286 -12%
24 Volkswagen Jetta 8.947 10.414 -14%
25 Hyundai Ioniq 4.066 0 New
26 Renault Fluence 3.862 5.081 -24%
27 Mitsubishi Lancer 2.665 3.791 -30%
28 Hyundai Elantra 2.173 1.507 44%
29 Peugeot 301 2.164 2.448 -12%
30 Subaru Impreza 865 912 -5%
31 Chevrolet Cruze 21 149 -86%
32 Fiat Bravo 20 320 -94%
33 Honda CR-Z 1 32 -97%
  Segment total 2.380.154 2.317.728 3%

Click on any model to see its annual sales from 1997-2016 and monthly sales from 2012 to 2016, or use the dropdown menu in the top right of this site.

Car sales statistics are from the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland.

Sources: Manufacturers, ANDC, JATO Dynamics.

About Bart Demandt

Bart is a 36-year old Dutchman who’s always had a thing for cars, the automotive industry and statistics. He’s combined these passions by writing about them on CarSalesBase.com. His daily driver is an Alfa Romeo GT 3.2 V6 which he just can’t seem to say goodbye to thanks to the mesmerizing exhaust note.
You can find all his articles Here.

Comments

  1. Do you know in which European markets the attractive Mégane Sedan will be available? And when it will go on sale? Given its great success in Turkey, I’m sure it will/would be a hit in countries like Spain, Portugal or Ireland (where the Fluence is still strong despite of its age), and help it climb on the podium in 2017.
    Thanks.

  2. I would love to see that Mégane sedan for sale in Portugal, that’s for sure. 🙂
    The increase in sales with the new generations of the Mégane and Astra were very impressive.

    I think for 2017, the Tipo will surpass the sales of the Toyota Auris. Your numbers don’t include Turkey right? Because the Egea (Tipo in Turkey) sold nearly 40k units.

    The Ioniq is selling quite well as well. I hope the plug-in hybrid is successful because it is an atractive car.

  3. Up to the end of 2016 Toyota has sold over 45 million Corollas and according to one of Honda’s CEOs in USA the Civic has been sold over 35 million times. So why the world appreciates the reliability anf the high quality of Japanese sedans and people in Europe still buy only Golf, Astra and Octavia (which is Golf again)? Why?

    • @Todor

      Three main reasons:

      1) European customers are very conservative.
      2) Non-European brands don’t focus enough on Europe. Honda sort of neglects this continent.
      3) Rules and regulations which don’t favour foreign brands (e.g. Mazda), because/with the result they (consciously) don’t invest enough to make their cars more suitable for the European market.

    • A mix of asian brands not investing enough in Europe (little return for money invested, go check profit margins of manufacturers in Europe) and heavy regulation of the industry.

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