The midsized car segment in Europe continues its decline in 2019 with a 18% decrease in deliveries in the second quarter, to less than 108.000 cars. In the first half of the year, sales are down 21% as the segments now accounts for just 2,5% of the European car market as just two out of the 12 available nameplates improve their sales in the first half. The segment which sold nearly 1 million units annually as recently as 10 years ago is now down even further on what already was its lowest volume ever. Interestingly, the luxury midsized car segment is down by just 1% so far this year and is 63% larger than these mainstream models. The traditional segment leader Volkswagen Passat falls faster than the overall segment but is back above 30% share in Q2, and still holds a dominant position. Its sibling Skoda Superb is the only model in the top-4 to improve its share of the segment with sales down “just” 11% while the Opel/Vauxhall Insignia loses almost a third of its sales and the Ford Mondeo is down by 22% and was outsold in Q2 by the new Peugeot 508 with its well-received design. The 508 should become a podium contender when it reaches full availability of all versions, as deliveries of the station wagon version only just started.
The compact car segment in Europe slows down its decline in the second quarter of 2019, with a loss of 8% to just over 557.000 sales, but is still down 11% for the first half as Europe’s second largest segment now accounts for 13,1% of the total market, down from 14,1% in the first six months of 2018. In both quarters the compact car segment showed lower sales than the small crossover segment (up 11% to 14,2% share of the market) and that makes the small crossovers are now the second largest segment in Europe, pushing the compact cars to #3. At least the overall best selling model still comes from the compact car segment, although the Volkswagen Golf is under threat from the Renault Clio now that a redesigned Mk VIII Golf is on the way and Volkswagen has an internal competitor with the T-Roc. Among compact cars, the Golf is still the dominant leader, even though its share is down by 0,7 percentage points to 20,4%, as it lost 14% of its sales in the first half of 2019. The already renewed Ford Focus is still in 2nd place but its margin over the Skoda Octavia was significantly smaller in Q2 with less than 700 sales separating them. The Focus is the only nameplate in the top-7 to improve its sales.
After an 8% decline in Q1 of 2019, sales of subcompact cars in Europe continue their decline in Q2 with a drop of 7%, to nearly 750.000 deliveries. In the first half of the year, Europe’s largest segment by volume accounts for 18% of the total market with sales down 7% on the same period in 2018. The Renault Clio takes firm control of the segment, outselling its nearest rival by almost 30.000 sales in Q2 and showing stable sales in the first half, leading to almost a full percentage point of additional share of the segment, to 12,3% (and even 13,3% in the second quarter). The Clio is enjoying a smooth changeover to the new generation which arrived in showrooms in Q2 while the outgoing model is still selling strong. Its rivals Volkswagen Polo and Ford Fiesta are losing ground, with especially the latter falling behind quickly since its new generation was launched last year. The Fiesta was nearly outsold by the aging and soon-to-be-replaced Peugeot 208 in Q2 and all three sold fewer units than the surprise #3 of the segment in the second quarter: the Dacia Sandero. Despite being launched in 2012, the Sandero has managed to improve its sales every year since and its success is showing no signs of slowing down, with a 5% increase so far this year and adding nearly a percentage point of share, in the meantime passing hte Opel/Vauxhall Corsa and closing in on the 208 and Fiesta. Combined with the Zoe EV, the Nissan Micra and hte Renault Logan, the Renault-Nissan Group held a 28,3% share of the segment in the second quarter of 2019, compared to 23,4% for PSA and 19% for the VW Group.
The minicar segment in Europe reverses its decline in the second quarter of 2019 as European car buyers took delivery of nearly 340.000 minicars, a 2% gain on 2018 and leading to a 1% loss in the first half, compared to an overall market loss of 3,6%. After a dip below the 30% mark in Q1, Fiat’s dominance in this segment rebounds to 31,2% in Q2 with its two models. The Fiat 500 manages to outsell its sibling Fiat Panda by a slight margin, but not enough to reclaim the segment crown for the first half of the year. These two models are surprisingly resilient considering the 500 is in its 12th year without any major redesign and the Panda in its 8th year but is still the best performer in the segment top-10 for the first half of 2019. Surprisingly, the #3 best selling minicar in Europe in the second quarter was the Renault Twingo, helped by the recent facelift of the model. As a result, the Twingo has passed the long-time #3 of the segment Volkswagen Up! in the first-half ranking to claim 4th place behind the Toyota Aygo, after the Japanese model already leapfrogged the Up! in Q1.
After looking at the June and first half 2019 brands ranking for Europe, lets zoom in on the models ranking. Eternal best seller Volkswagen Golf is due fora redesign and loses volume for the 10th consecutive month. In fact, the Renault Clio has never been closer to taking the #1 spot in Europe, with a gap of just 1.500 sales between Europe’s two best selling cars. And the Clio is right in the middle of a changeover to the new generation, with June sales still mostly representing the outgoing model as well as the first demo registrations of the fifth generation Clio. To complete the good news for Renault in the ranking, the Captur jumps to equal its highest position ever in third place, making the podium exactly the same as the only other time this happened, in December 2017. [Read more…]
After a few relatively stable months in April and May, with sales up 1,4% and down 1,3% respectively, European new car sales were down by 7,8% in June 2019, to 1,48 million sales. For the first half of the year, sales are down 3,6% to 8,3 million units. According to ACEA, the surprisingly heavy decline in June can be attributed to a negative calendar effect. On average, June only counted 19 working days across the EU in 2019, compared to roughly 21 days the year before. As a result, the five major EU markets all posted declines, especially France (-8,4%) and Spain (-8,3%), whereas the UK (-4.9%), Germany (-4,7%) and Italy (-2,1%) performed better than the overall market. Just five out of the 30 countries of the EU and EFTA showed growth in March, with the fastest growing markets Lithuania (+41,1%), Romania (+15%) and Ireland (+12,7%), while Greece (+4,5%) and Cyprus (+0,9%) are the remaining countries in the plus. Biggest losing markets in June were Sweden (-52%) and Iceland (-47,7%), the former influenced by an artificially high month of June in 2018 which pulled forward registrations in anticipation of a new tax system in July of last year. In the first half each of the big EU markets recorded a slight decline with the exception of Germany (+0,5%).
Stellar sales performance from the RAM Pickup sees it jump ahead of the Chevy Silverado
Sales in the US Large Pickup segment rose by 1.9% to 1,174,581 in the first half of 2019, all but matching the 2.1% growth rate the segment recorded in 2018. What’s more, all this happened while the segment is still awaiting the proper rollout of the all-new Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra, and while the new RAM Pickup is still ramping up [Read more…]
Slow rollout of new Ford Ranger and Jeep Gladiator resulted in good but not great segment growth
Sales in the US Small Pickup segment rose by 15.0% to 298,120 in the first half of 2019, just a bit slower than the 15.9% rate at which they grew in 2018. However, now that the Ford Ranger and the long-awaited Jeep Gladiator pickup have finally hit the market their sales are bound to build up in the second half of the year – this means that [Read more…]
New models and solid sales of older models drive healthy segment growth
Sales in the US Mid-sized SUV segment rose by 8.9% to 1,077,859 in the first half of 2019, a faster rate than the 3.4% the segment experienced in 2018. This growth was due to two factors: first, the past year and a bit has seen the market debut of a number of models new to the segment (Subaru Ascent, Volkswagen Atlas, Chevrolet Blazer [Read more…]
Segment resumes its double-digit sales decline as every model falls into the red
Sales in the US Minivan segment fell by 15.8% to 216,835 in the first half of 2019, rapidly accelerating the sales decline the segment has been experiencing in the past few years. With the new Toyota Sienna being the only new model on the (seemingly still-distant) horizon, and the Kia Sedona not long for this world now that the Telluride has [Read more…]