US sales 2016 Subcompact SUV segment


Sales in the Subcompact SUV segment surged by a whopping 44.1 percent compared to 2015, the fastest rate of growth by far in 2016, and more than double that recorded by the second-fastest growing segment, Large SUV. What’s more, with 396,960 sales in 2016 the Subcompact SUV segment surpassed the Large SUV segment in sales for the first time, and should reach half a million sales in either 2017 or 2018. However, it’s important to keep in mind that, for all its growth, the segment remains relatively small compared to the other SUV segments: 2016 saw over 1.8 million Mid-sized SUVs being sold, as well as almost 3.1 million Compact SUVs

Highlights for 2016:

  • After a speedy start in 2015 which saw it grab third place in the rankings, Jeep Renegade grabbed the segment lead in 2016 in a commanding fashion, putting some clean pair between itself and other cars in the segment, despite a dip in sales in Q3 which saw it come within 25 sales of losing its lead
  • Behind the Renegade 2016 saw a fierce battle being fought for second, third and fourth spot, a battle that was eventually won by Honda HR-V, which almost doubled its sales compared to 2015, with the facelifted Chevrolet Trax coming up third (sales up 27 percent), and 2015 segment leader Buick Encore (sales up 16 percent) losing out in fourth by a mere 500 units to its third-placed cousin
  • The segment trailblazer in the US, and sales leader until 2013, Nissan Juke remains the only car to in the segment to have ever lost sales year-on-year, with its 2016 tally of 19,577  representing barely over a half of what it sold in 2013
  • Mazda CX-3 finished 2016 just behind the Juke in the standings, but actually ended up outselling it in the second half of the year, suggesting it will easily get ahead of it in 2017
  • Fiat 500X‘s year-on-year sales growth is misleading, because it only went on sale in late Q2’15 – rather, the fact that Q4 sales were 59 percent lower in 2016 than a year prior illustrates just how much the model is struggling to find buyers, which bodes really badly for Fiat‘s prospects in the US – if it can’t sell a model in the hottest, and least-established segment of the market, how can it hope to progress beyond being a niche brand?

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

About Krzysztof Wozniak

Kriss grew up in Poland reading German car magazines, before moving to England and graduating to the British magazines, which he still considers the best in the world and continues reading them after he’d moved to the US. In college he promised himself he’s buy himself a used Porsche before he turned 30 (not to be accused of having a mid-life crisis), but instead family needs dictated a Subaru Outback. Still waiting for that perfect moment to buy a used 2008-ish Cayman…
You can find all his articles Here.


  1. FCA really needs to better define what it wants frmo the Fiat brand in the US.
    The 500X is selling very well in Europe and its sales should be higher in the US.

  2. Stephen Higley says:

    Fiat has never recovered from it bone-headed decision to set up a dealer network with only the dinky single model. The 500L is an singularly ugly and repair prone. Fiat had a reputation for building shoddy cars and they needed to enter the market with 3 or 4 models of impeccable quality. Dribbling out new models with the “500” name attached to all of them also seems to have convincingly confused the American public. You must be very careful with the American public as they are easily fooled by lying con men…

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