Sales of compact cars in the United States are down by a worrying 16% in 2019, and the segment is down 1.6 percentage points of share of the total US car market, to 9.7%. It now holds 35% of the sedan market in the US, down from 36.8% in 2018. The Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla consolidate their leadership thanks to stable sales while their closest two rivals both see their sales drop by double digits. The Civic and Corolla are now not only the only two nameplates to sell over 300,000 cars each, but also the only ones to sell over 200,000 cars, with the Nissan Sentra and Hyundai Elantra both dropping below that threshold as both are down by 13%. The Civic and Corolla together hold 38% of the compact car segment (39.7% of non-luxury compact cars), up from 32% in 2018. We lose three members of the 100k sales club, as the Ford Focus and Chevrolet Cruze have been killed by their manufacturers and the Kia Forte dropped below that mark despite falling slower than the overall segment. We do welcome a returning member after a 1-year absence with the Jetta back above 100,000 sales again, allowing it to jump from 8th in 2018 to 5th in 2019. [Read more…]
- Segment down 3% YTD, stable at 5% share of the European new car market.
- Mercedes-Benz takes firm control of the segment with the A-Class selling nearly double of its nearest rival in Q3, up 39% YTD and gaining 7,6 percentage points of share to take a quarter of all sales in this segment
- Combined with the B-Class and CLA, Mercedes improves its share of the segment to 41,9% (up 9,3 percentage points), compared to 32% for BMW (down 3,3 percentage points) and 17% for Audi (down 1,6 percentage points), for a German Big-3 share of 87,6% share of the segment, not even including the Mini Clubman’s 3,6% share
- BMW 1-Series the biggest loser of the top-3 due to the model changeover to the new generation
- Audi A3 relatively stable at -11% despite its age
- Mercedes-Benz CLA almost back in positive YTD thanks to the new generation
- Volvo V40 biggest loser in top-8 as model is discontinued in favor of the XC40 crossover
- Alfa Giulietta now facing the axe as well, YTD sales down by half
- BMW i3 second biggest winner of the segment at +37%
Sales of compact luxury cars in Europe are down 4% in the first half of 2019 to just over 400.000 units. Only four nameplates manage to improve their sales in this period while all the others are down by double digits. After storming to the top of the chart in 2018 for the very first time ever, the Mercedes-Benz A-Class distances its competition further this year, with a 41% increase in deliveries and a 7,5 percentage points improvement of share, as it now holds almost a quarter of the segment sales by itself. That leaves the former segment leader Audi A3 down into 2nd place with a loss of 12% and the BMW 1-series in third place with a loss of 2% just when a new generation arrives in showrooms. Mercedes-Benz has a second model that improves its sales in this class, with the B-Class up 5% thanks to its all-new third generation, moving past its direct rival BMW 2-series Active/Gran Tourer, and this is before a first-ever 7-seater version of the B-Class is launched. The 2-Series vans are down 22% despite relatively successful sales of the plug-in hybrid version, which makes up about 20% of the model’s sales. In sixth place we find the third Mercedes-Benz model with the CLA, down 12% as the new, second generation is just arriving in showrooms. Undoubtedly, the CLA will end the year in the positive when deliveries of the new model, including the Shooting Brake version, start to gain traction. [Read more…]
Segment shrinks despite new A-Class finding great purchase with buyers
Sales in the US Premium Compact segment fell by 14.2% to 32,669 in the first half of 2019, accelerating the rate of decline the segment experienced in 2018. What’s more, combined with the 24% sales decline the segment experienced in 2017, total sales are now heading towards barely over half of what the segment achieved in 2015. However, [Read more…]
Sales of compact luxury cars in Europe are down 6% in the first quarter of 2019 to just over 200.000 units. Only three nameplates manage to improve their sales in this period while all but all the others are down by double digits. After storming to the top of the chart in 2018 for the very first time ever, the Mercedes-Benz A-Class distances its competition further this year, with a 34% increase in deliveries and a 7,4 percentage points improvement of share, as it now holds almost a quarter of the segment sales by itself. That leaves the former segment leader Audi A3 down into 2nd place with a loss of 3% and the BMW 1-series in third place with a loss of 11% as a new generation will arrive later this year. That will be the end of the 1-Series as the only rear-wheel drive hatchback in the class as it will shift to the front-wheel drive platform of the 2-Series Active Tourer, X1 and Mini hatchback, among others. Mercedes-Benz has a second model that improves its sales in this class, with the B-Class up 5% thanks to its all-new third generation, moving past its direct rival BMW 2-series Active/Gran Tourer, and this is before a first-ever 7-seater version of the B-Class is launched. The 2-Series vans are down 29% despite relatively successful sales of the plug-in hybrid version, which makes up about 20% of the model’s sales. In sixth place we find the third Mercedes-Benz model with the CLA, down 15% as the new, second generation is just arriving in showrooms. Undoubtedly, the CLA will end the year in the positive when deliveries of the new model, including the Shooting Brake version, start to gain traction. [Read more…]
After five years of domination, the Audi A3 is no longer the best selling compact car from a luxury brand in Europe. In 2018, the Mercedes-Benz A-Class topped the charts for the very first time, as the overall segment shrank for the second year in a row, to below 800.000 sales, 5,2% of the entire European car market. The A-Class, helped by the introduction of the fourth generation, gained 7% to set the nameplate’s highest annual sales figure since 2005 at over 150.000 sales. The A3 lost 13% of its sales while the BMW 1-series was down 7% and was stuck in third place. Just off the podium we find two MPV models, of which the BMW 2-series Active/Gran Tourer is still the best seller despite losing 20% of its sales, as the Mercedes-Benz B-Class is down just 6%. The Mercedes-Benz CLA is down 9% which means it maintains is share of the segment, despite slowly starting to age. [Read more…]
The recently-unveiled Mercedes-Benz A-Class Mk IV has garnered rather mixed reactions. While most love its progressive interior, which relies on stand-alone screens not just for the infotainment, but also for the instrument cluster, others bemoan the exterior design which, they feel, hasn’t moved the game enough from the Mk III model. While [Read more…]
The Geneva Auto Show is one of the most important in the world, together with Detroit and Shanghai. Every year the Palexpo exhibition halls are jam-packed with exciting new launches from both the familiar mass-market brands and the obscure one-off garage-at-home builders. In terms of new production cars, Geneva never disappoints with more than a handful of all-new cars ready to hit showrooms in the coming months. After walking around on the show floor for two days, carefully observing, inquisitively test-sitting and numbing our ears with the broken record of marketing jargon, we’ve reached a verdict on what’s hot and what’s not.
In addition to the regular poll asking the “which is your favorite?” question, we also thought we’d ask you a slightly different question, more in the spirit of CarSalesBase – “which new car do you expect to deliver the biggest sales improvement on its previous generation?”. Enjoy! [Read more…]
Sales of premium compact cars Europe are back to their 2015 volume after peaking at almost 940.000 units in 2016. With nearly 874.000 sales in 2017, the segment accounts for 5,6% of the total European car market, down from 6,1% the year before. The average age of the models in this segment is relatively high which explains some of the decline. The top-10 models ranking is exactly the same as 2016 but there have been some individual fluctuations and we have a new leader in the brands ranking. Audi still holds the top spot with the A3, but its 14% loss means a 1,5 percentage point of lost share as its rivals are closing in. The Mercedes-Benz A-Class is pretty stable for a model that will be renewed in 2018 and stays ahead of the BMW 1-series as both models add more than a full percentage point of share. As a result, this top-3 increases its share of the segment to 51% and they are the only nameplates with 6-figure sales. The BMW 2-Series Active and Gran Tourer MPVs are down 15% as they’re being updated early 2018, but at least they remain well ahead of the Mercedes-Benz B-Class, whose next generation will also include a 7-seater option. In fifth place, Volvo is best of the rest as usual in the premium segments in Europe, with the V40 pretty stable at -6%.
The premium compact car segment in Europe loses volume for the third consecutive quarter in Q3 of 2017, with an 8% decline in sales. Year-to-date, the segment is down by 6% to nearly 671.000 sales. The ranking is relatively stable, but some individual models still show significant volume decreases or increases. The dominant segment leader Audi A3 is down 6% in the third quarter and its closest two rivals are closing in. The 2nd placed Mercedes-Benz A-Class improved 3% while the BMW 1-series saw stable sales in Q3. All three models have sold over 100.000 units so far this year and combined they control more than half of the segment. However, that does not paint the full picture, as Audi sells its hatchback, sedan and convertible models all under the A3 monicker, while Mercedes-Benz and BMW have split off some of those versions under different names. Mercedes-Benz is the segment leader in terms of brand sales, with the A-Class hatchback, B-Class MPV and CLA sedan and station wagon at 210.606 sales, stable on the year before. BMW follows closely with 205.950 sales of its 1-Series hatchback, 2-Series MPV and 2-series Coupe & Convertible as well as the i3 EV, down 2%.