Midsized premium SUVs in Europe are booming with an increase of 25% in the first quarter of 2016, as Mercedes-Benz finally decided to bring a competitive product to the segment and a handful of older models are surprisingly stable. That hasn’t kept the Range Rover Evoque from reclaiming the lead of the segment ahead of the Volvo XC60. The Evoque has just been facelifted and benefits with a 15% increase of sales. It likely won’t hold on to that lead until the year, as sales of the model are heavily skewed towards March as a result of its popularity in the UK market. It’s surprising to see the XC60, basically an 8-year old model (facelifted in 2014), that still manages to outsell a hot and fresh new rival. I think the Mercedes-Benz GLC will lead the segment by the end of December, and that would be a first for the brand in this segment, as the GLK has never been able to keep up with its rivals.[Read more…]
Sales of Premium Mid-sized SUVs in the US rose by 24% in Q1 2016 to 91,701 vehicles – a slightly slower rate of growth than the smaller Premium Compact SUV segment, but faster than the Premium Large SUV one. Growth in the segment was driven both by new models (Mercedes-Benz GLC, Land-Rover Discovery Sport) and existing models enjoying better sales (BMW X3, Porsche Macan, Infiniti QX50). That said, despite sales in the segment booming, some big players lost more than 30% of sales, most notably Volvo XC60 and Range Rover Evoque. While these two models will have to soldier on for a while longer before their replacements arrive, 2016 will see the release of a two major new models: Cadillac XT5, which is about to hit the market any month now, and Audi Q5 Mk II, which will join it later in the year. [Read more…]
The Audi Q5 has proven to be a very important model for Audi. It may not have been Audi’s first SUV (that would be the gargantuan Q7), but it has been its most successful one. Even as it is about to be replaced in 2016 by a completely new model, the current eight-year-old Q5 was the second-best selling car in the Premium Mid-sized SUV segments in Europe and in the US in 2015! Over its lifespan, it has consistently outsold its German competitors, the BMW X3 and Mercedes-Benz GLK, quite the feat for a first-time effort from Audi. And now, with the second generation Q5 model almost upon us, I wonder if it will be able to its predecessor’s sales success.
The Premium Mid-sized SUV segment grew by 38% in 2015 to 362.817 vehicles, adding more than 100.000 sales to its 2014 volume, with only one remaining model losing volume and eight setting new volume records as luxury buyers are shifting away from sedans to crossovers. The segment leader Cadillac SRX breaks its volume record in the 13th and last full year of the nameplate that spans two generations. Cadillac’s best selling model will be replaced by the XT5 in 2016, and the brand surely hopes to continue the upward trend.The Audi Q5 has been on the market for 7 years now, and has managed to improve its sales volume in each of those years, making 2015 the best year so far for the model, helping it move past the Acura RDX into the segment #2 spot. Similarly, the RDX also has shown volume growth for six consecutive years and scores its highest volume ever.
The premium midsized SUV segment in Europe was red-hot in 2015, growing 25% to 366.008 sales as all remaining nameplates but one show volume improvements and two newcomers have stormed up the charts. After flamboyantly taking control of the segment last year, the Volvo XC60 consolidates its leadership by growing only slightly slower than the rest of the segment and blasting past last-year’s record sales for the already 7-year old model. The XC60 has grown by 67% in two years time thanks to its facelift and the introduction of new, four-cylinder engines. The Audi Q5, just as old as the XC60, improves its sales for the third consecutive year, albeit by a more modest 6%. That means the Q5 still increases the gap to the #3 Range Rover Evoque, as that model is up by just 2% as customers were waiting for the facelifted version to arrive in showrooms. When that happened, the Evoque was up 11% in Q4.
The Premium Mid-sized SUV segment grew by 33% over the first three quarters of 2015, and an impressive 48% in Q3.
Sales of premium midsized SUVs in Europe slow down their impressive growth rate in Q3, with sales up 13% for the quarter, compared to 29% in the first half of 2015. This means the segment has already added over 50.000 units of volume so far this year. Much of this growth comes from new entrants to the segment, but also from the segment leader this year: the Volvo XC60. With an increase of 29% and almost 13.000 added sales, the XC60 looks unbeatable for the rest of the year , even though the Audi Q5 outsold it in August and was only 1.000 units behind in the third quarter.
The Range Rover Evoque has suddenly lost a third of its volume in Q3, after gaining 11% in the first half. The Evoque will be facelifted slightly, without much changes to its exterior design, and the addition of a convertible won’t make much of an impact sales-wise, as our readers agreed in the poll. [Read more…]
The Premium Midsize SUV segment grew by 26%, less than the smaller, Compact segment but faster than the Premium Large SUV one. The main driver of this growth has been the introduction of new models such as the Lexus NX, Lincoln MKC and BMW X4, though most existing models also experienced a healthy growth rate. With the new Mercedes-Benz GLK about to go on sale, and the new Audi Q5 and Cadillac SRX just around the corner, all signs point to growth in this segment continuing for a while yet.
The Premium Midsized SUV segment in Europe continues its surge, with sales up 29% in the first half of 2015, boosted by new introductions to the segment, but also continued strength of the existing models, as only 2 SUVs show year-over-year declines (not including the discontinued Land Rover Freelander). The Volvo XC60 confirms it is now the new leader of the segment, with sales up 31% on last year. The XC60 has really been boosted by its facelift and engine updates last year, as it enjoyed record sales in 2014, and is set to do even better this year. As I predicted in the Q1 segment analysis, the Audi Q5 reclaims second place from the Range Rover Evoque. The Evoque will be updated later this year, and a convertible version will be added, although I doubt that will add a lot of volume to the model. A new generation Q5 should arrive next year, but Audi hasn’t yet confirmed this. [Read more…]
It seems Mercedes is finally serious about gunning for class leadership with the new GLC, as the new car is a much better put-together proposition than its GLK predecessor. For starters, it eschews the awkward faux-Geländewagen boxy looks in favor of much more organic looks of the new C-class. In fact, I believe it automatically becomes the most handsome car in the class alongside the Porsche Macan, easily beating the somewhat awkward X3 and handsome but dated Q5.
More than that, however, the new model seems to have all the advantages of the donor C-class, such as an advanced and lighter platform, gorgeous interior and sophisticated drivetrain options. And Mercedes will also finally offer the new car in the UK in right-hand-drive, in recognition of the importance of that market to compact premium SUV sales.