Sales in the Small Pickup segment grew by 25.5 percent in 2016, making it the second-fastest-growing segment, and significantly outpacing the 2.5 percent growth rate of the Large Pickup segment. Morevoer, there is much more scope for growth in the segment, a fact recognized by Honda when it decided to develop the second-generation Ridgeline that went on sale in 2016. Still, with 448,399 sales in 2016 the segment was only a fifth of the size of the Large Pickup segment, and remains smaller than it was a decade ago (sales in 2006 were 562,657). With the recent introduction of the Ridgeline and the heaviliy-modified-for-2016 Toyota Tacoma 2017 is unlikely to bring new metal, with Nissan taking its sweet time with the replacement for the Frontier and Jeep with the long-awaited pickup version of the Wrangler.
Highlights for 2016:
- Toyota Tacoma remained the undisputed segment leader in 2016, selling almost twice as well as the second-placed model, even though capacity constraints have limited its sales growth to 7 percent year-on-year
- Second-placed Chevrolet Colorado and fourth-placed GMC Canyon both enjoyed solid growth of a little over 25 percent, but even combined sales figures of the two models can’t get close to the Tacoma’s numbers
- Nissan Frontier split the GM twins in sales terms, and also enjoyed the highest growth rate from among the models that sold in any substantial volume in 2015, a remarkable performance for a model that has been on the market largely unchanged since 2004; it will be interesting to see whether Nissan will eventually replace it with a model specially designed for the US (as Toyota has done with the Tundra, foregoing its existing HiLux pickup sold internationally), or bring its Navara model that was developed with the Asian and European markets in mind (much as GM has done with the Colorado)
- Honda Ridgeline, the only truly new model for 2016, has done well so far, outselling the Canyon in the second half of the year; however, it remains to be seen whether the model can do better than its predecessor, whose sales topped out at just over 50,000 units in 2006, its second year on the market, and steadily declined thereafter to a little over 13,000 in 2014
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